Category: Economics

Charmian Gooch: End Anonymous Companies (TED video)

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Anonymous companies protect corrupt individuals — from notorious drug cartel leaders to nefarious arms dealers — behind a shroud of mystery that makes it almost impossible to find and hold them responsible. But anti-corruption activist Charmian Gooch hopes to change all that. At TED2014, she shares her brave TED Prize wish: to know who owns and controls companies, to change the law, and to launch a new era of openness […]

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10 Ways to Prepare for a Post-Oil Society

The best way to feel hopeful for the future is to prepare for it. The best way to feel hopeful about our looming energy crisis is to get active now and prepare for living arrangements in a post-oil society. Out in the public arena, people frequently twang on me for being "Mister Gloom’n’doom," or for "not offering any solutions" to our looming energy crisis. So, for those of you who […]

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All Give and No Take

Do those negotiating the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership have any interest in democracy? Here’s a test. Nothing threatens democracy as much as corporate power. Nowhere do corporations operate with greater freedom than between nations, for here there is no competition. With the exception of the European parliament there is no transnational democracy, anywhere. All other supranational bodies – the IMF, the World Bank, the United Nations, trade organisations and […]

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The Benefits Claimants the Government Loves

Corrupt, irrational, destructive, counter-productive: this scarcely begins to describe our farming policy. Soil erosion in a maize field. Photo: Defra Just as mad cow disease exposed us to horrors – feeding cattle on the carcasses of infected cattle – previously hidden in plain sight, so the recent floods have lifted the lid on the equally irrational treatment of the land. Just as BSE exposed dangerous levels of collusion between government […]

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European Patent Office Blunder Leads to Grant of a New Patent on Conventional Breeding

Patent granted on watermelons. 20 February 2014 Munich. The company, H.M. Clause, which belongs to the French co-operative group, Limagrain was granted a European Patent on watermelons (EP 1816908). The patented watermelon plant is supposedly even more multibranching and smaller fruits than usual, but this cannot be an invented trait since it is part of naturally occurring biodiversity. The patent covers the seeds, the plants and the fruits. The plants […]

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Holmgren’s ‘Crash on Demand’: Be Careful What You Wish For

Originally published on TransitionNetwork.org It is a rare occurence that I disagree with David Holmgren. One of my heroes, and the co-founder of permaculture, I generally find his intellect formidable, his insights on permaculture revelatory, and his take on the wider patterns and scenarios unfolding around us to be deeply insightful. But while there is much insight in his most recent paper, Crash on Demand, it also raises many questions […]

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Muddying the Waters

How the government’s farming policies have produced a perfectly designed system for flooding your home. It has the force of a parable. Along the road from High Ham to Burrowbridge, which skirts Lake Paterson (formerly known as the Somerset Levels), you can see field after field of harvested maize. In some places the crop lines run straight down the hill and into the water. When it rains, the water and […]

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A Shorter Working Week is Possible

Click for full view Marcin Gerwin: It was predicted in the 1930 by the economist John Maynard Keynes that thanks to the technological innovations, people in the twenty-first century will not have to work more than 15 hours a week. But here we are in the twenty-first century and many people in the industrialized world are in a hurry all the time and they have very little free time left. […]

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Recharting Collapseniks

Only a few are willing to risk arrest for the sake of an utopian outcome. Ted ‘The Unabomber’ Kaczynski obviously occupies the upper right corner. Starhawk, Bill McKibben and David Graeber are not lighting any fuses but at least have what they think are better plans, or maybe just better processes. Our post stirred the hornet’s nest and so we have found it necessary to revisit those star charts and […]

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Charting Collapseniks

Rather than spurning financial system terrorists, Holmgren urges activists to become “terra-ists”; to directly bring down the system by thousands of acts of economic disobedience. A ferment in the environmental movement, brewing for many years, has now bubbled up into the blogosphere. We are dipping our ladle in here to take a little taste of it, even though we are quite certain it is not done fermenting. Bill McKibben has […]

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As Sea Ice Shrinks, Arctic Shipping Options Expand

by Janet Larsen and Emily E. Adams, Earth Policy Institute Photo: Rosatomflot On October 7, 2013, the Nordic Orion bulk carrier ship completed its journey from Vancouver, Canada, to Pori, Finland, having traveled northward around Alaska and through the Northwest Passage. It was the first large commercial freighter ever to make the voyage through these typically ice-covered Arctic waters. Avoiding the longer journey, through the Panama Canal, reportedly saved $80,000 […]

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Right Livelihood – How Can We All $upport One Another?

The notion of Right Livelihood is an interesting subject and surprisingly, sometimes controversial. by Carolyn Payne-Gemmell So, what do I do with my time and how do I make a living? I am a permaculture designer and teacher, and I sell plants, seeds, produce and poultry. I would like to make my living entirely from these things; I would like all the money I make to come to me through […]

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