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thinkahol *

"Captured Europe" by Simon Johnson | Project Syndicate - 0 views

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    The Greek default has turned out to be the proverbial dog that didn't bark. The lesson for Europe - and for the US - is clear: it is time to stop listening to what banks say, and start focusing on what they do. We must re-evaluate the distorted political economy of the financial sector, before the excessive power of the few imposes even larger costs on everyone else.
thinkahol *

David Graeber: On Playing By The Rules - The Strange Success Of #OccupyWallSt... - 0 views

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    Just a few months ago, I wrote a piece for Adbusters that started with a conversation I'd had with an Egyptian activist friend named Dina:

    All these years," she said, "we've been organizing marches, rallies… And if only 45 people show up, you're depressed, if you get 300, you're happy. Then one day, 200,000 people show up. And you're incredulous: on some level, even though you didn't realize it, you'd given up thinking that you could actually win.

    As the Occupy Wall Street movement spreads across America, and even the world, I am suddenly beginning to understand a little of how she felt.
thinkahol *

Can the Fed Prevent the Next Crisis by Eliminating Interest on Student Loan Debt? | Tru... - 0 views

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    Among the demands of the Wall Street protesters is student debt forgiveness - a debt "jubilee." Occupy Philly has a "Student Loan Jubilee Working Group," and other groups are studying the issue. Commentators say debt forgiveness is impossible. Who would foot the bill? But there is one deep pocket that could pull it off - the Federal Reserve. In its first quantitative easing program (QE1), the Fed removed $1.3 trillion in toxic assets from the books of Wall Street banks. For QE4, it could remove $1 trillion in toxic debt from the backs of millions of students.
thinkahol *

WHERE GOOD IDEAS COME FROM by Steven Johnson - YouTube - 0 views

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    One of our most innovative, popular thinkers takes on-in exhilarating style-one of our key questions: Where do good ideas come from?

    With Where Good Ideas Come From, Steven Johnson pairs the insight of his bestselling Everything Bad Is Good for You and the dazzling erudition of The Ghost Map and The Invention of Air to address an urgent and universal question: What sparks the flash of brilliance? How does groundbreaking innovation happen? Answering in his infectious, culturally omnivorous style, using his fluency in fields from neurobiology to popular culture, Johnson provides the complete, exciting, and encouraging story of how we generate the ideas that push our careers, our lives, our society, and our culture forward.

    Beginning with Charles Darwin's first encounter with the teeming ecosystem of the coral reef and drawing connections to the intellectual hyperproductivity of modern megacities and to the instant success of YouTube, Johnson shows us that the question we need to ask is, What kind of environment fosters the development of good ideas? His answers are never less than revelatory, convincing, and inspiring as Johnson identifies the seven key principles to the genesis of such ideas, and traces them across time and disciplines.

    Most exhilarating is Johnson's conclusion that with today's tools and environment, radical innovation is extraordinarily accessible to those who know how to cultivate it. Where Good Ideas Come From is essential reading for anyone who wants to know how to come up with tomorrow's great ideas.
thinkahol *

The Yes Men Present: The Yes Lab for Creative Activism by The Yes Lab - Kickstarter - 0 views

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    ABOUT THIS PROJECT
    For years, the Yes Men have been tinkering with side-splitting mischief as a way to fight injustice. Our latest film about those efforts, The Yes Men Fix the World, won lots of awards and was released all over the planet... but it simply did not fix the world. 
    So a year ago, we decided that showing what we do wasn't enough: we needed to help people to actually do it themselves. We called our idea The Yes Lab for Creative Activism. It's a factory for meaningful mischief, and a system for helping organizations and individuals carry out Yes Men-style actions on their own, to get media attention for important issues. But the Yes Lab is more than that: it also aims to help YOU take action on issues of social importance.
    Today, after a year of testing and nearly a dozen successes, we're proud to announce that the Yes Lab is ready for prime time! It's got a set of cool tools in development, that will soon help YOU get involved in new Yes Lab projects, and even to launch them. And it's got a new home at NYU, with space, lots of eager participants, and an ambitious new structure that will soon be cranking out many new projects.
    The trouble is that in spite of all that, we still have zero budget for the first round of projects themselves! And that's why you're reading this now. We're asking for $10,000, to make the all-new Yes Lab the lean, mean, change-making machine it can be. Any amount raised over $10,000 will bankroll projects beyond the first round.
thinkahol *

Tomgram: Barbara Ehrenreich, On Americans (Not) Getting By (Again) | TomDispatch - 0 views

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    The big question, 10 years later, is whether things have improved or worsened for those in the bottom third of the income distribution, the people who clean hotel rooms, work in warehouses, wash dishes in restaurants, care for the very young and very old, and keep the shelves stocked in our stores. The short answer is that things have gotten much worse, especially since the economic downturn that began in 2008.
thinkahol *

Americans Don't Realize Just How Badly We're Getting Screwed by the Top 0.1 Percent Hoa... - 0 views

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    With an unprecedented sum of wealth held within the top one-tenth of one percent of the US population, we now have the most severe inequality of wealth in US history.
thinkahol *

The Apprenticeship Solution by Daniel Luzer | Washington Monthly - 0 views

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    As Gumbrecht writes:

    [American University economics Professor Robert] Lerman, an Urban Institute fellow, has studied youth unemployment for decades, and thinks the United States ought to try an updated version of an old technique for education and employment: apprenticeships.
    They're not the same as an after-school fast food job or a summer internship at dad's office, he said. Apprenticeships require skill development in a workplace over a number of years. The education, which might be supplemented by classroom training, leads to a credential - maybe a title, certification or diploma - that proves mastery of a skill. During that time, apprentices are paid, and employers are getting another worker.
thinkahol *

AFP: UN warns of 70 percent desertification by 2025 - 0 views

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    Drought could parch close to 70 percent of the planet's soil by 2025 unless countries implement policies to slow desertification, a senior United Nations official has warned.
    "If we cannot find a solution to this problem... in 2025, close to 70 percent could be affected," Luc Gnacadja, executive secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, said Friday.
    Drought currently affects at least 41 percent of the planet and environmental degradation has caused it to spike by 15 to 25 percent since 1990, according to a global climate report.
    "There will not be global security without food security" in dry regions, Gnacadja said at the start of the ninth UN conference on the convention in the Argentine capital.
    "A green deal is necessary" for developing countries working to combat drought, he stressed.
    The next meeting on the convention is scheduled to take place in South Korea in 2010.
thinkahol *

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Society | Vanity Fair - 0 views

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    Americans have been watching protests against oppressive regimes that concentrate massive wealth in the hands of an elite few. Yet in our own democracy, 1 percent of the people take nearly a quarter of the nation's income-an inequality even the wealthy will come to regret.
thinkahol *

US Uncut Debuts With Nationwide Protests Against Tax Dodgers by Chuck Collins - 0 views

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    The latest from a growing international movement to make corporate tax dodgers pay ... so public services don't have to.
thinkahol *

We can only cut debt by borrowing | Martin Wolf's Exchange | FT.com - 0 views

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    "You can't cut debt by borrowing." How often have you read or heard this comment from "austerians" (a nice variant on "Austrians"), who complain about the huge fiscal deficits that have followed the financial crisis? The obvious response is: so what?
thinkahol *

U.S. Zeroes In on Use of Antibiotics by Pork Producers - NYTimes.com - 0 views

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    Medical experts say the practice leads to the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, but farmers say it helps produce healthier animals for more profit.
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