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Economy of El Salvador

The economy of El Salvador has experienced low rates of GDP growth relative to other developing countries. Rates have not risen above the low single digits in nearly two decades – part of broader environment of macroeconomic instability which the integration of the US dollar has done little to improve. One problem that the Salvadoran economy faces is the inequality in the distribution of income. In 2011, El Salvador had a Gini Coefficient of.485, which although similar to that of the United States, leaves 37.8% of the population below the poverty line, due to lower aggregate income. The richest 10% of the population receives 15 times the income of the poorest 40%; as of 3 November 2014, the IMF reports official reserve assets to be $3.192B. Foreign currency reserves are $2.675B. Securities are $2.577B with total currency and deposits at $94.9M. Securities with other national central banks are $81.10M. Securities with banks headquartered outside the reporting country $13.80M. SDRs are at $245.5M.

Gold reserves reported at $271.4M with volume in millions of fine Troy ounces at $200k. Other reserve assets are financial derivatives valued at $2.7M. Having this hard currency buffer to work with, the Salvadoran Government undertook a monetary integration plan beginning 1 January 2001, by which the U. S. dollar became legal tender alongside the colón, all formal accounting was undertaken in U. S. dollars. This way, the government has formally limited its possibility of implementing open market monetary policies to influence short term variables in the economy. Since 2004, the colón stopped circulating and is now never used in the country for any type of transaction. S. dollars. In general, people were unhappy with the shift from the colón to the U. S. dollar, because wages are still the same but the price of everything increased. Some economists claim this rise in prices would have been caused by inflation regardless had the shift not been made; some economists contend that now, according to Gresham's Law, a reversion to the colón would be disastrous to the economy.

Some banks however claim that they still do some transactions en colones, keeping this change from being unconstitutional. The change to the dollar precipitated a trend toward lower interest rates in El Salvador, helping many to secure credit in order to buy a house or a car. Fiscal policy has been one of the biggest challenges for the Salvadoran government; the 1992 peace accords committed the government to heavy expenditures for transition programs and social services. The stability adjustment programs initiated by President Cristiani's administration committed the government to the privatization of banks, the pension system and telephone companies; the total privatization of the pension system has implied a serious burden for the public finances, because the newly created private Pension Association Funds did not absorb coverage of retired pensioners covered in the old system. As a result, in July 2017, the Government of El Salvador wanted to take $500 million from the privatized pension system to cover retired pensioners from the old not privatized system, but the Supreme Court of El Salvador declared this move unconstitutional.

The government lost the revenues from contributors and absorbed the costs of coverage of retired pensioners. This has been the main source of fiscal imbalance. ARENA governments have financed this deficit with the emission of bonds, something the leftist party FMLN has opposed. Debates surrounding the emission of bonds have stalled the approval of the national budget for many months on several occasions, reason for which in 2006 the government will finance the deficit by reducing expenditure in other posts; the emission of bonds and the approval of a loans need a qualified majority in the parliament. If the deficit is not financed through a loan it is enough with a simple majority to approve the budget; this would facilitate an otherwise long process in Salvadoran politics. Despite such challenges to keep public finances in balance, El Salvador still has one of the lowest tax burdens in the American continent. Many specialists claim that it is impossible to advance significant development programs with such a little public sector.

The government has focused on improving the collection of its current revenues with a focus on indirect taxes. Leftist politicians criticize such a structure since indirect taxes affect everyone alike, whereas direct taxes can be weighed according to levels of income and are therefore fairer taxes. However, some basic goods are exempt from the indirect taxes. A 10% value-added tax, implemented in September 1992, was raised to 13% in July 1995; the VAT is the biggest source of revenue, accounting for about 52.3% of total tax revenues in 2004. Remittances from Salvadorans working in the United States sent to family members are a major source of foreign income and offset the substantial trade deficit of around $2.9 billion. Remittances have increased in the last decade and reached an all-time high of $2.9 billion in 2005—approximately 17.1% of gross national product. As of April 2004, net international reserves stood at $1.9 billion. In recent years inflation has fallen to single digit levels, total exports

Yogi Gita

Yogi Gita meaning “Yogi’s song”, refers to a collection of spiritual teachings and prayers of Yogiji Maharaj, the fourth spiritual successor to Swaminarayan. The Yogi Gita encapsulates the necessary attributes one must imbibe in order to progress spiritually and become Brahmarup or attaining the highest level of spiritual enlightenment; the Yogi Gita contains invaluable interpretations of Swaminarayan's teachings from the Vachanamrut. This, provides an expansive view of the Akshar-Purushottam Darshan, the doctrinal foundation of BAPS philosophy; the Yogi Gita begins with a letter from Yogiji Maharaj to a devout follower and Prarthana or prayer offered in Mahelav, Gujarat. The Yogi Gita continues with the Jivan Bhavna, a collection of Yogiji Maharaj's life philosophy and guidance, the Hrudayni Vato, a collection of words of wisdom; the Yogi Gita consists of a letter, written over a period of three days, from 28 March to 1 April 1941, as well as a prayer said at Shastriji Maharaj's birthplace 9 December 1966.

In 1940, Yogiji Maharaj came down with a severe case of dysentery in Rajkot. When Shastriji Maharaj, his guru, heard of Yogiji Maharaj's plight, he sent an attendant named Jagivan Ruda Poriya to nurse Yogiji Maharaj back to health. Upon Yogiji Maharaj's full recovery, Jagjivan asked to be sent off with Yogiji Maharaj's spiritual wisdom as “reward” for his efforts. In response to the request, Yogiji Maharaj wrote the letter that would become a part of the Yogi Gita. In his letter to Jagjivan; the "satsangi," Yogiji Maharaj reinforced the importance of three basic qualities: Samp or cooperation, Suhradhaybhav or friendship, Ekta or unity, indicated that all devotees should strive to live by these principles. Yogiji Maharaj described the following principles that he believed would lead to eternal peace and happiness: Service and Attaining Moksha: Yogiji Maharaj stressed the importance of Atmanishta or believing oneself to be the soul as one of the pre-requisites to attaining liberation; the values of faithfulness and total surrender to God and his sadhu and his belief that one should live as das no das or the servant of God's servant were succinctly explained within the section.

Avoiding Gossip: This short section addresses how gossiping reduces the virtues of an aspirant and is one of the biggest obstacles on the path to liberation. Realization of one's Faults: To highlight the need for introspection, Yogiji Maharaj referred to the words of Jaga Bhagat. Yogiji Maharaj wrote that if one begins to look at the faults of other, they should pause and look at their own faults instead. Tolerance and Forgiveness: Yogiji Maharaj described these two virtues as amongst the most powerful qualities a spiritual aspirant could have. Mutual Affection: Yogiji Maharaj explained the need for a collaborative understanding of various principles. Spiritual Discourses: Yogiji Maharaj stated that by listening to spiritual discourses and absorbing the knowledge inherent in them one would experience tranquility and inner happiness; the second section contains Yogiji Maharaj's earnest prayer to Shastriji Maharaj while at Mehelav. Yogiji Maharaj used various spiritual qualities of Shastriji Maharaj as examples to illustrate the tenets that devotees should instill in themselves.

In essence, Yogiji Maharaj prayed that all devotees could become as virtuous and devout as Shastriji Maharaj. The editors of the text compiled various proverbs of Yogiji Maharaj that encapsulated his insights and philosophy of life. Meaning "the sayings of the heart," this section explores numerous sayings and empirical teachings of Yogiji Maharaj, it focuses on the spiritual attributes. Yogiji Maharaj reinforced the fact that devotees would never suffer from misery if they had a firm refuge in God. To devotees of the BAPS Swaminarayan sect, the Yogi Gita is an inspirational text that aims to increase the spiritual purity of ordinary believers. Yogiji Maharaj's own virtuous life and esteem in the eyes of BAPS followers give added weight to the teachings present in this work. A theme prevalent throughout the Yogi Gita is the Akshar-Purshottam Darshan and the belief that true spiritual awakening and liberation can be achieved only with the help of a Satpurush – a God-realized soul. In the Yogi Gita, this Satpurush was Shastriji Maharaj.

Devotees within the sect use Yogiji Maharaj's adherence to his guru's principles and intense devoutness as prime examples of how an ideal spiritual life should be led

Niagara Power

The Niagara Power is a collegiate summer baseball team in the New York Collegiate Baseball League. Founded in 2007 the team played in the NYCBL a 46-game schedule, with 23 home games at Sal Maglie Stadium for nine seasons, from 2007 through 2015; the team owner and general manager was Cal Kern. After missing the playoffs in each of its first four seasons, Niagara made playoff appearances in four of the last five seasons, taking home the Western Division Championship in 2012. Niagara lost to the eventual NYCBL champion in its last three playoff appearances. Niagara was the only team to take at least one game against Hornell during the 2014 playoffs and a game against Olean in the 2015 playoffs; the team was a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, a charitable organization which encourages community outreach among athletes. The Power were noted for their service to the Niagara community. Affer a two-year hiatus, Niagara University announced in October 2017 that its College of Hospitality and Tourism Management purchased the Niagara Power and that the school's sports management department would operate the team.

The purchase makes NU the first university in the country to own and operate a summer collegiate baseball team. In the first season following the takeover by Niagara University's College of Hospitality and Tourism Management, the team went 23-19, making the playoffs; the team lost in the first round at Olean in the playoffs. In the 2019 season the Power broke the team's record for wins in advancing to the team's second NYCBL championship series; the team set a record for wins with 30 in 34 overall. The team defeated the Mansfield Destroyers 2 games to 1 in the Western Division Championship Series to advance to the NYCBL Championship; the team defeated the Cortland Crush 2 games to zero to win the team's first NYCBL championship in its 11 year history and Niagara Falls' first non-scholastic title since the Rapids in 1993. Niagara Power official website NYCBL teams