A Recent Find of Uncut 19th-Century Chinese Stamps

A Lakewood, New Jersey, resident, Avrahom Joseph maintains a successful entrepreneurial career. Avrahom Joseph has a passion for rare coins and stamps, which he values for their beauty as well as their collectibility. In early 2015, one of the most remarkable rare stamp finds in years occurred, with a set of 35 Chinese stamps found in a Cotswolds, UK, attic where they had been stored for more than a century.

The stamps were acquired by an English missionary living in Shanghai in the 1880s and stored in an ornate cigar box. Upon his retirement, the missionary brought the unused stamps back to England. These unremarkable looking stamps are particularly rare because of the centerpiece, an uncut sheet of 19 ‘candarin’ stamps, which were used for sending mail in China. The rareness of the find caused a UK philatelic dealer to snap up the stamps for nearly 80,000 pounds and put them up for auction, where they are expected to sell for as much as a quarter of a million pounds.

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Homo Sapiens

After researching this topic extensively, I found quite a bit of interesting “sidebars” and studies, some of which have merit, but mostly of the ridiculous realm. There are studies suggesting that Homo Sapiens interbred with Neanderthals, and by some biblical scholars, even angels. There is also an odd argument that people with Down Syndromes are not human, as chimpanzees are between 95 and 98.5% genetically similar to humans and Down Syndromes are only 97.87% and cannot mate successfully with humans. Seems odd, but the question of Homo Sapiens breeding with chimpanzees seems to have opened a Pandora’s box of different mindsets and opinions in the human race. Many cannot fathom interbreeding with chimps and find the idea “too hard to stomach”, “ridiculous”, and “a sham”. However, scientists seem to have much proof to the contrary. Our genetic code is so similar to the chimps, that there must have been “hybridization” between the two races. They found that the time from the beginning to the completion of divergence between the two species ranges over more than four million years. In particular, it was found that the X chromosome – which occurs twice in women and once in men – is the youngest part of the genome and was still being modified just before the final split occurred. It would seem that there was inbreeding and then a split after a period of time. However, more recent research shows that there are discrepancies in the closeness of the chimp to the homo sapien, and that they may only be 95% similar which would make a huge difference in the large amount of DNA code tracked. In conclusion, it does seem likely from most of the body of research that was gleaned that some form of inbreeding and then speciation (the separation of one species from another) did occur, but this is not conclusive. What IS clear though, is that this topic is enough of a hot button to create tremendous debate among scholars in both the scientific and ethical arenas.

Sources

http://www.livescience.com/783-human-chimp-ancestors-interbred.html

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/early-humans-and-chimps-may-have-interbred-to-create-hybrid-man-478663.html

http://www.createdebate.com/debate/show/Downs_Syndromes_are_not_human

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2002/09/0924_020924_dnachimp_2.html

Cleveland Indians Name New Bullpen Coach

An experienced entrepreneur, Avrahom Joseph has established himself in the business and philanthropic communities in Lakewood, New Jersey. Avrahom Joseph balances his professional and charitable efforts with an interest in sports, including his support for the Cleveland Indians.

In a recent press release, the Indians announced they have hired a new bullpen coach, Jason Bere, who will transition from his nine-year role as a special assistant to the team’s baseball operations department. Bere previously worked with both minor and major league pitchers, so he is already familiar with the organization and its members. Before assuming his current role, Cleveland strategically arranged for Bere to join the team at points throughout the season to add value to the coaching staff and gain experience.

Bere replaces Kevin Cash, who recently became the new manager for the Tampa Bay Rays. According to Cleveland leadership, Bere offers a different skill set than Cash, as well as a strong ability to communicate with the team. A former pitcher, Bere spent more than a decade in the major leagues with the Brewers, Cubs, Reds, White Sox, and Indians.