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Fleet Management

May 14, 2018

The Trucking Conditions Index fell more than 5 points in March, but the environment remains favorable to carriers. Source: FTR

The Trucking Conditions Index fell more than 5 points in March, but the environment remains favorable to carriers.

FTR’s Trucking Conditions Index for March fell more than five points from the previous month’s record high. But it remains indicative of a favorable environment for carriers.

March’s TCI fell to 10.30 from 15.41 the month earlier, but was more than triple March 2017’s TCI reading of 2.97. While the number fell in March, FTR says that it was not indicative of a fundamental change in the current freight demand climate.

FTR expects the carrier-favorable environment to continue through the rest of the year with even more favorable conditions possible during the second and third quarters.

“While diesel prices increases are a negative for the carriers, the relatively modest uptick in recent fuel costs is more than offset by significant gains in pricing and overall strong demand for transportation,” said Jonathan Starks, chief intelligence officer at FTR. “The Market Demand Index published by Truckstop.com and FTR shows that the spot market is once again tightening, rising each of the last four weeks to 58.1 in week 18. It is likely to hit new record highs as we approach the summer shipping season at the end of May.”

Favorable conditions are likely to peak and then stabilize in 2019 as fleets continue to add capacity and suppliers adjust new regulations.

“The latest data suggests that the capacity crunch has stabilized somewhat following the electronic logging device implementation, but it certainly has not abated,"said Avery Vise, vice president of trucking research at FTR. “The most recent jobs report serves as a warning that carriers might find adding capacity tougher in the months ahead, an outcome that could help maintain margins but limit revenue opportunities.”

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Legal Opportunity Structure and Gay Rights Litigation
Ellen Ann Andersen
Draws on political science, law, and sociology to explain the origins, progress, and outcomes of gay rights litigation

Description

Over the past 30 years, the gay rights movement has moved from the margins to the center of American politics, sparking debate from bedroom to boardroom to battlefield. Out of the Closets and into the Courts analyzes the most recent gay rights cases, and explores the complex relationship between litigation and social change. Ellen Andersen describes what happens when these cases—many overseen by the Lambda Legal Defense Fund, the nation's oldest and largest gay rights defense firm—enter the courtroom, and explains why they have met with mixed success.

Out of the Closets and into the Courts explores both the promise and the limits of using legal mobilization to effect social change. Crossing disciplinary boundaries, Ellen Andersen draws on the accumulated knowledge of political science, law, and sociology to explain the origins and outcomes of gay rights litigation. The resulting book is essential reading for anyone interested in gay rights, legal change, and social movements.

is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

Praise / Awards

"A detailed historical analysis of changes in the law surrounding gay and lesbian relationships, also breaks fresh ground in thinking about how and when law can be used to affect social change. The concept of a legal opportunity structure, which complements the concept of political opportunity structure, proves to be very useful in analyzing judicial changes in the law. A very impressive analysis." —Mayer Zald, Professor Emeritus, University of Michigan

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The bitter-sweet life

Aperitivo zamaro is an aperitif-style amaro created by Kiki Braverman. It is inspired by the bounty of botanicals found in the northern alpine environment of her home country Bavaria, Germany.

The perfect amount of bitterness is balanced by subtle sweetness, astringency, acidity, floral and herbal notes to create optimal balance. It took several years to perfect the composition of aperitivo zamaro: Researching prescriptions that date back to the renaissance, experimenting with local botanicals, arriving at the perfect recipe at a time of renewed interest in amari and the aperitif culture. Just like all pür•spirits distillates, it does not contain artificial ingredients and is colored with the bright red of real natural cochineal only.

'Amaro' is Italian and means 'bitter liqueur'. Bitter liqueurs have a long tradition south and north of the European alps. They were carefully composed by alchemists, pharmacists and in monasteries. The idea was to extract bitter components from plants to improve digestion. Before distillation arrived in Europe in the late middle ages, the medicinal properties of botanicals had to be extracted in hot water. Through distillation much more potent elixirs could be made by steeping herbs, roots, berries, flowers, barks and spices in high-proof alcohol. Honey was added to make the bitter potions more palatable and the bitter liqueur ‘amaro’ was born.

Amari remain very popular in Europe and come in two styles: The aperitivo is served before the meal and the digestivo after. Both are quintessential cocktail ingredients and are back in the focus of the international bartending community.

23% alc./vol. (46 proof)

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Stir ingredients over ice. Express orange peel, discard. Garnish with strawberry slices.

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Light a cinnamon stick and place on a plate. Cover with a cocktail glass. Let smolder for a minute. In the meantime, stir all ingredients with ice and then pour into the ice filled, smoked cocktail glass. Garnish with grapefruit peel.

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