Contrary to what those in power would like you to believe so that you'll give up your pension, cut your wages, and settle for the life your great-grandparents had, America is not broke. Not by a long shot. The country is awash in wealth and cash. It's just that it's not in your hands. It has been transferred, in the greatest heist in history, from the workers and consumers to the banks and the portfolios of the uber-rich. [...more]
To anyone who is paying attention, things look doomed. Fortunately for American capitalism, nobody is paying attention. They never have. [...more]
Thirty-three years ago, I watched as a culture that had been sealed off from the rest of the world was suddenly thrown open to economic development. Witnessing the impact of the modern world on an ancient culture gave me insights into how economic globalisation creates feelings of inadequacy and inferiority, particularly in the young, and how those psychological pressures are helping to spread the global consumer culture. Since that time I have been promoting the rebuilding of community and local economies as the foundation of an ‘Economics of Happiness’. [...more]
Globalization is killing Europe, just as it's already wiped out much of the American middle class.
Spain and Greece are facing immediate crises that many other European nations see on the near horizon: aging boomer workers are retiring with healthy benefit packages, but the younger workers who are paying for those benefits aren't making anything close to the income (or, therefore, paying the taxes) that their parents did.
The number of hungry people, which was declining for several decades, bottomed out in the mid-1990s at 825 million. It then climbed to 915 million in 2008 and jumped to over 1 billion in 2009. With world food prices projected to continue rising, so too will the number of hungry people, leaving millions of families trying to survive on one meal per day.
“We know from studying earlier civilizations such as the Sumerians, Mayans, and many others,” says Brown, “that more often than not it was food shortages that led to their demise. It now appears that food may be the weak link in our early twenty-first century civilization as well.
Recently I've begun compiling a list of things to be cheerful about. Here are some items that should bring a smile to any environmentalist's lips: [...more]
No paragraph should begin with 'Renderers convert dead animals into...' and end with 'crayons.' Yet this is exactly how the Introduction Paragraph started and ended in a report provided to the 108th Congress in 2004. The report provided to Congress discusses dead animals rendered into various products such as pet food and crayons. [...more]
The global economy is losing more money from the disappearance of forests than through the current banking crisis, according to an EU-commissioned study. [...more]
The US is sinking into depression, and as the result of globalization much of the rest of the world is being dragged along. Most people have never seen anything like this in their lifetimes. What they are witnessing is secular upheaval that will bring great change to beliefs, values and lifestyles. A new word is needed to describe it, as it is something much more than an economic depression. Maybe reconstruction will serve as the descriptive term for now. [...more]
Most of environmentalists' time and creative energy is bent toward
policy. Books on climate, organizational manifestos, and blog posts
argue the finer points of carbon taxes versus cap-and-trade and other,
often arcane, details. Little of our thinking or resources goes into
social change theory, political strategy (aside from elections),
organizing and campaigning, applying lessons from U.S. history... [...more]