Obama-rouhani Chat Covers Nuclear Talks, New York Traffic

New York Yankees Paying Robinson Cano $300 Million Is a Terrible Idea

Are the Israelis going to be able to live with that? Economic Sanctions Irans pursuit of nuclear technology has led Obama and his allies in Europe to tighten economic sanctions and the U.S. and Israel to threaten military action to prevent the Islamic republic from obtaining nuclear weapons. Iran denies that its seeking to do so. Nuclear talks stalled in April, when Rouhanis predecessor, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was still in power. Discussions got under way again as Kerry and his counterparts from the five other world powers — China , France , Russia , the U.K., and Germany — met Zarif. The participants agreed to jump-start the process so we could move forward with a view to agree first on the parameters of the endgame, Zarif said afterward. Neither side trusts the other, and Obama and Rouhani each face internal political pressures not to negotiate. Rouhani took office last month after winning election on a pledge to end Irans global isolation and ease the trade curbs. At the UN this week, he repeatedly said his government is ready for a deal. Skeptical Reaction Some U.S. lawmakers say they remain skeptical of Rouhanis overtures. Representative Eliot Engel of New York, the top Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said after Rouhanis address to the UN General Assembly that the Iranian leaders rhetoric does not reflect any significant change in Irans calculus or behavior. We must continue to make clear that all options remain on the table to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapons capability, Engel said in a Sept. 24 statement. Diplomats and analysts have cautioned that the real test of Rouhanis commitment to an accord will start when detailed negotiations resume in Geneva on Oct.

Iran Ready for Result-Oriented Talks, Rohani Says

To make things more complicated, one of their few remaining true superstars, second baseman Robinson Cano , has finished his contract and is reportedly seeking a new 10-year deal worth $305 million, according to ESPN’s Buster Olney. The general consensus around the sports world seems to be that the Yankees would be making a mistake by agreeing to this deal. Mike Lupica of the NY Daily News pointed out as much: We are about to see if the Yankees will learn their lesson this time around, not be as monumentally boneheaded with Cano as they were six years ago with that broken-down heap they have at third base and DH, meaning Alex Rodriguez . Ian O’Connor at ESPN New York added that,”Really long-term deals (and not just A-Rod’s) haven’t been kind to the Yanks, so they need to be smart here.” I have to throw my hat into the ring and agree that handing Cano a contract that huge would be a terrible mistake. Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sport Obviously. the Yankees are in a bad way right now and need to retain all the all-star talent they can. Cano is a five-time all-star, a two-time Gold Glover and a four-time Silver Slugger winner, making him arguably the best second baseman in MLB . On the other hand, he has a reputation for not hustling at times and is already 30 years old, making him a bad candidate for continuing to produce at his historical rate. The numbers don’t lie. In 2007, a research study found that a typical MLB player only lasts 5.6 years in the majors with most players experiencing a rapid decline in their skill set right around their 30th birthday. Cautionary tales such as that of Adam Dunn , Hall of Famer Ralph Kiner or Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim mistakes Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton show us that even top performers usually see their abilities drop off once they enter their 30s. Cano turns 31 on Oct. 22and while his numbers for this season were right in line with his historical averages, I can’t help but wonder when we’ll start to see things tail off for him. It might be next year or it might be the year after, but it is coming and he won’t be worth $30 million per season when it happens. In fact, if Cano falls apart like his over-priced teammate Alex Rodriguez, he might not be worth $30 a season before too long. The bottom line is that Yankees general manager Brian Cashman would be a fool to cave in to Cano’s current contract demands.

New York jail stay costs same as Ivy League tuition

Other cities dont have Rikers Island, Martin F. Horn, who in 2009 resigned as the citys correction commissioner, said noting that hundreds of millions of dollars are spent a year to run the 400-acre island in the East River next to the runways of LaGuardia Airport that has 10 jail facilities, thousands of staff and its own power plant and bakery. The citys Independent Budget Office annual figure of $167,731 which equates to about $460 per day for the 12,287 average daily New York City inmates last year was based on about $2 billion in total operating expenses for the Department of Correction, which included salaries and benefits for staff, judgments and claims as well as debt service for jail construction and repairs. But there are particularly expensive costs associated with Rikers. Transportation costs The department says it spends $30.3 million annually alone on transportation costs, running three bus services that usher inmates to and from court throughout the five boroughs, staff from a central parking lot to Rikers jails and visitors to and around the island. There were 261,158 inmates delivered to court last year. A way to bring down the costs, Horn has long said, would be to replace Rikers Island with more robust jails next door to courthouses. But his attempts to do that failed in part because of political opposition from residential areas near courthouses in Brooklyn, Manhattan and elsewhere. My point is: Have you seen a whole lot of outcry on this? Why doesnt anything happen? Horn said of the $167,731 annual figure. Because nobody cares. Thats the reason we have Rikers Island, he said. We want these guys put away out of public view. New Yorks annual costs dwarf the annual per-inmate costs in other big cities.