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Merkel’s European Failure: Germany Dozes on a Volcano

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Published on Spiegel Online International, by Jürgen Habermas, August 09, 2013

Angela Merkel’s government is forcing Southern Europe to undertake profound reforms while at the same time denying its own responsibility for the consequences of its crisis policies. Germany is risking a historic failure with its shortsighted wrangling … //

… A Duplicitous Game:

The fact is that the Merkel administration is forcing its controversial crisis agenda on France and the “southern countries,” while the purchasing policy of the European Central Bank (ECB) provides unacknowledged support.   Continue Reading…

Tanzania: Smallholder farmers lose in most govt programmes

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Interview with Mr Stephen Ruvuga, MVIWATA – Published on Food Crisis and the Global Land Grab (first on The Citizen), by Alawi Masare, Business Week, August 7, 2013.

… Apart from what you have said, what are the tangible achievements in the 20 years of the Mviwata existence?

  • The Kibaigwa market in Dodoma – probably the largest grain market in Tanzania – was built by Mviwata.
  • We also constructed agro-produce markets in other places. Examples are Mgeta’s Kinole, Nyandira and Tawa markets in Morogoro Region; Mkata in Tanga; Igagala in Njombe; Igurusi in Mbeya and Matai and Kasanga in Rukwa. All these have not only facilitated rural farmers to access reliable markets and better prices, but also contributed to the improvement of the economy.   Continue Reading…

We Won’t Pay: Greek activists reconnect power to poverty-stricken homes

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Watch the video, 2.44 min, published on Russia Today RT, August 8, 2013.

With a Eurozone record of 27 percent of Greeks unemployed, people are taking a pro-active approach to the crisis. Activists from the ‘We Won’t Pay’ movement, which boasts 10,000 members, are illegally reconnecting power to hundreds of homes.

Tough austerity measures have left many people in Greece unable to pay their electricity bills. The ‘We Don’t Pay’ movement which has over 10,000 members helps many of those by illegally reconnecting power to their homes, despite legal action against them.   Continue Reading…

Comment la Faim tue toutes les 4 secondes

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(Headlines dans ActuWiki du 6 août 2013 (si vous avez la force, il nous reste le droit): Les «people» cet été en 15 bikinis les plus chauds: De Miami Beach à Saint-Tropez, les «people» profitent également du soleil. Un véritable défilé de bikinis les plus cours et les plus chaud du moment …
… la télévidion a une sorte de monopole de fait sur la formation des cerveaux d’une partie très importante de la population. Or, en mettant l’accent sur les faits divers, en remplissant ce temps rare avec du vide, du rien ou du prèsque rien, on écarte les informations pertinentes que devrait posséder le citoyen pour exercer ces droits démocratiques (Pierre Bourdieu) …
… Comme ce genre d’information n’intéresse que très peu de monde, on est obligé de venir vous chercher …
)

Comment la Faim tue toutes les 4 secondes: Continue Reading…

A Path Forward for Egypt’s Revolution

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Published on Worker’s Action, by Shamus Cooke, August 4, 2013.

The battle for the future of Egypt is underway, and it’s chaos. There has been violence on both sides of the divide, with the military inflicting the heaviest doses on supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood. The violence combined with any lack of long-term solution could bode poorly for Egypt’s future, but the situation is in extreme flux, and by no means anywhere settled. There is still abundant hope for most Egyptians to achieve a better world, though time is of the essence … //
Continue Reading…

Beyond the Double Standard: Towards a Real Liberation Politics

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Beyond the Double Standard: Towards a Real Liberation Politics – Published on New Socialist Webzine, Canada, by Cinzia Arruzza, July 25, 2013.

A few months ago on the New York subway I saw the most incredible poster, a picture of a crying baby of colour with the words, “Got a good job? I cost thousands of dollars each year”. While I was still recovering from the shock, I saw a similar poster of a little Black girl: “Honestly Mom… chances are he won’t stay with you. What happens to me?”   Continue Reading…

Gesichter der Armut

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Video mit Prof. Dr. Christoph Butterwegge, 48.57 min, von RosaLuxNRW am 24. Mai 2012 hochgeladen: (der) Politikwissenschaftler aus Köln, spricht über Ursachen und Ausprägungen von Armut, den Mythos des „Fahrstuhleffekts”, prekäre Arbeitsverhältnisse, Steuerpolitik und über die Probleme des bedingungslosen Grundeinkommens …;

US: The Great Eviction

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Published on ZNet (first on TomDispatch), by Laura Gottesdiener, August 02, 2013.

… It’s May 2012 and we’re in Woodlawn, a largely African American neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago. The crew Quafin is a part of dubbed themselves the HIT Squad, short for Housing Identification and Target. Their goal is to map blighted, bank-owned homes with overdue property taxes and neighbors angry enough about the destruction of their neighborhood to consider supporting a plan to repossess on the repossessors.   Continue Reading…

raus aus der Euro-Falle

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Wege aus der Euro-Falle, 111.02 min, von COMPACTTV, am 22 Mai 2013 auf YouTube hochgeladen.

Chris Hedges

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… interviewed by Paul Jay, uploaded on YouTube by TRNN (and 2/7 by Sundrumify,), during July 2013:

Hardwired Inequality in America

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Published on Steve Lenfman’s Blog, by blog owner, July 29. 2013.

America’s always been separate and unequal. Today it’s worse than ever in modern times.

Wealth disparity between rich and poor is unprecedented. Annually it widens. Government complicity with business bears full responsibility. It’s worse than ever under Obama … //

… Fact check:   Continue Reading…

Lessons for Brazil from South Africa

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Published on Pambazuka News, by Patrick Bond, July 24, 2013.

Brazilians have much to learn from South Africans who hosted the 2010 World Cup in which thousands of South Africans rioted in the streets prior to the games and FIFA took billions in revenues. Will Brazil’s main trade union remain stymied by their alliance to the ruling party like South Africa’s?   Continue Reading…

Big Mama and the Massacre: ICC’s Reputation at Risk in Kenya

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Published on Spiegel Online International, by Erich Follath, July 26, 2013 (Photo GalleryTranslated from the German by Christopher Sultan).

Fatou Bensouda, chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, is doing all she can to put Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta behind bars. But the hurdles are high, and failure could spell doom for the dream of global justice … //

… Holding Commanders Responsible? … // Continue Reading…

Arab Peoples are heading toward Defeat, Decline, and even Suicide

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… a Video Clip with Algerian Journalist Khaled Omar Ben Guiga, 2.34 min, on MEMRI.org/clip, spoken in arab, subtitled in engish;

Middle East Media Research Institute MEMRI: /Homepage, /MEMRI.org, /MEMRI TV.org, /Reform in the Muslim world;

FORCED MARIAGE for an 11-Year-Old Yemeni Girl: Nada Al-Ahdal Flees Home to Avoid Forced Marriage: I’d Rather Kill Myself, 2.52 min, (spoken in arab, subtitled in english), uploaded on YouTube by MEMRItvVideos, on July 21, 2013 (just now 7 316 362 times clicked).

Growing threat of radical rebels infiltrating ranks of Syrian rebels

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Interview with Middle East expert Edmund Ghareeb, published on Russia Today RT, July 24, 2013.

… The Kurds living in the area have been trying to protect their homes, amid heavy fighting between jihadist forces and Syrian government troops:

RT: The lives of innocent Kurdish civilians are now in danger from Al-Qaeda terrorists. What do you think the hostage takers want and why would they be targeting the Kurds?    Continue Reading…

Immutable Egypt-Gaza bonds

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Published on Intrepid Report, by Nicola Nasser, July 24, 2013.

Gaza will remain a matter of national security for Egypt. And regardless of who is in charge in Gaza, Egypt will also remain a strategic asset for Gaza, a lifeline for its people, and a mainstay of its peace and stability.

These are the irreversible facts of the ties between Egypt and Gaza. In other words, when Egypt sneezes, Gaza catches a cold.  Continue Reading…

Increasing Attacks: Piracy Shifts Coasts in Africa

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Published on Spiegel Online International, by Gordon Repinski, July 19, 2013 (Photo GalleryTranslated from the German by Nick Ukiah).

The scourge of African piracy is shifting from the East Coast to the West. Although the attacks are taking a major toll on the global shipping trade, world leaders continue to play for time in the hope that it will be resolved locally.

In the moments before the attack, the Hansa Marburg seemed to be cruising peacefully in the Atlantic Ocean. It was April 22, 2013 and, based on its coordinates, the German container ship was about 130 nautical miles southwest of the port of Malabo in the Central African state of Equatorial Guinea – a long way from the coast … // Continue Reading…

The Peak Prosperity Video Channel

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uploaded by ChrisMartensondotcom on YouTube presents:

a Bill Black Audio: The Banks Have Blood on Their Hands, 47.25 min, July 14, 2013: We invited Bill Black to return to explain whether the level of systemic risk due to fraud in our financial markets has improved or worsened since the dire situation he painted for us in early 2012. Sadly, it looks like abuse by the big players has only flourished since then.   Continue Reading…

The Silent Humanitarian Crises Beyond East Africa

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The international response to the East African crisis is far short of urgent needs, yet the extreme deprivation being reported is only the tip of the iceberg – Published on Mammon Messiah Blog.ch, by Adam Parsons and Rajesh Makwana, July 22, 2011. (also on CommonDreams and Dissident Voice and Share The World’s Resource STWR).

The unfolding crisis in the Horn of Africa is yet another tragedy that reflects the dysfunction and injustice inherent in the structures of the world economy. Although the factors that are currently causing widespread hunger and deprivation across a large part of the region include the worst drought for 60 years, escalating food prices and continued regional conflict, the problem is largely man-made and entirely preventable if sufficient resources are redistributed to all people in need.   Continue Reading…

Report: Chavismo After Chávez: What Was Created? What Remains?

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The Communal State: Communal Councils, Communes, and Workplace Democracy – Published on nacla.org, by Dario Azzellini, Summer 2013.

The particular character of what Hugo Chávez called the Bolivarian process lies in the understanding that social transformation can be constructed from two directions, “from above” and “from below.” Bolivarianism—or Chavismo—includes among its participants both traditional organizations and new autonomous groups; it encompasses both state-centric and anti-systemic currents. The process thus differs from traditional Leninist or social democratic approaches, both of which see the state as the central agent of change; it differs as well from movement-based approaches that conceive of no role whatsoever for the state in a process of revolutionary change.   Continue Reading…

Sense, sensibilities and spying

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Edward Snowden’s revelations about American espionage have riled Europeans. So has the administration’s response – Published on The Economist, from print edition, July 6, 2013.

THE noun Der Shitstorm made a timely entrance to the official German lexicon this week. France is in a similar avalanche d’emmerdements. So, too, are countries as far afield as Japan, India and Turkey, which are also digesting revelations about the nature and extent of America’s electronic espionage on them.   Continue Reading…

Suppressed FREE Energy Device is Finally Exposed, After 100 Years!

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Watch this video on YouTube: Video Proof of Concept, 2.34 min, uploaded by web19designer, Oct. 25, 2010: see also the website Nicola Tesla Secret.com.

Find Nikola Tesla: on YouTube search; on en.wikipedia, including Further reading and External Links;  on Google Web-search; and on Google Images-search.

Made in Bangladesh: Greed, Globalization and the Dhaka Tragedy, Part 1

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Published on Spiegel Online International, by Hauke Goos and Ralf Hoppe,  July 5, 2013 (Photo Gallery 1: How Demand for Cheap Clothes Turned Deadly, Photo Gallery 2: Life as a Bangladeshi Factory WorkerTranslated from the German by Christopher Sultan).

On April 24, a textile factory collapsed in Dhaka, Bangladesh, killing over 1,100. A government investigator has presented his results to SPIEGEL. They tell a harrowing story of a disaster caused by greed and the pressures of globalization.   Continue Reading…

Egypt’s Revolution: Between The Streets And The Army

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Egypt’s revolution will never be complete until the authoritarian neoliberal state is finally dismantled. Only the power of the streets can do this – Published on Roarmag.org, by Jerome Roos, July 2, 2013.

… The Clash of Coalitions:

The main lesson we can draw from this historic episode is that revolutions are never clean-cut events undertaken by an easily-identifiable revolutionary subject, but always complex processes of inherently chaotic social struggle in which different elite factions vie for power and legitimacy, with the revolutionary multitude itself often caught in between them, at times allying itself with one side or another.  Continue Reading…

US-Taliban talks: a lesson for Kagame and Museveni

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Why US-Taliban talks should open the way for Kagame-FDLR, Museveni-LRA dialogue – Published on Pambazuka News, by Antoine Roger Lokongo, June 26, 2013.

The current US-Taliban talks now remove any pretexts Kagame and Museveni might have not to talk to the FDLR and to the LRA, respectively. Tanzanian President, Jakaya Kikwete’s proposal for talks involving all parties in the Great Lakes region to find a permanent political solution to the problems of the region must be urgently heeded.   Continue Reading…

World’s Most Evil And Lawless Institution? The Executive Branch Of The U.S. Government

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Published on ZNet, by Fred Branfman, June 28, 2013.

Introduction: America’s Secret Shame: America has a secret. It is not discussed in polite company or at the dinner tables of the powerful, rich and famous … //

… Americans keep this secret because facing it openly would upend our most basic understandings about our nation and its leaders. A serious public discussion of it would reveal, for example, that we cannot trust Executive Branch leaders’ human decency, words, or judgment no matter who is President. And more troubling, acknowledging it would mean admitting to ourselves that we have been misleading our own children, that our silence has robbed them of the truth of their history and made it more likely that future leaders will continue to commit acts that stain the very soul of America.  Continue Reading…

World order unjust and immoral! Ecuador’s Correa rips into Snowden coverage

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Published on Russia Today RT, June 27, 2013.

Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa came up with scalding online remarks over criticism his country faced from the US press for potentially granting asylum to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

–They’ve managed to focus attention on Snowden and on the ‘wicked’ countries that ‘support’ him, making us forget the terrible things against the US people and the whole world that he denounced,” Correa said Wednesday in response to a Tuesday Washington Post editorial.
“The world order isn’t only unjust, it’s immoral,” Correa added … // Continue Reading…

6 Mind-Blowing Stats

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on How 1 Percent of the 1 Percent Now Dominate Our Elections (who is financed by whom) – Published on ZNet (first on Mother Jones), by Andy Kroll, June 26, 2013.

Here’s a statistic that should jolt you awake like black coffee with three shots of espresso dropped in: In the 2012 election cycle, 28 percent of all disclosed donations—that’s $1.68 billion—came from just 31,385 people. Think of them as the 1 percenters of the 1 percent, the elite of the elite, the wealthiest of the wealthy (the rainmakers, Heidi).

That’s the blockbuster finding in an eye-popping new report by the Sunlight Foundation, a nonpartisan transparency advocate. The report’s author, Lee Drutman, calls the 1 percent of the 1 percent “an elite class that increasingly serves as the gatekeepers of public office in the United States.” This rarefied club of donors, Drutman found, worked in high-ranking corporate positions (often in finance or law). Continue Reading…

Khadamas for Sale: Child Exploitation Bonanza

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Published on Dissident Voice, by Ramzy Baroud, June 18, 2013.

Last night at the hotel lobby of an Arab Gulf country, a family walked in aiming for the westernized café that sells everything but Arabic coffee. The mother seemed distant as she pressed buttons on her smart phone. The father looked tired as he buffed away on his cigarette, and a whole band of children ran around in refreshing chaos that broke the monotony of the fancy but impersonal hotel setting.   Continue Reading…

The Making of a Global Security State

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Published on ZNet (first on TomDispatch), by Tom Engelhardt, June 17, 2013.

As happens with so much news these days, the Edward Snowden revelations about National Security Agency (NSA) spying and just how far we’ve come in the building of a surveillance state have swept over us 24/7 – waves of leaks, videos, charges, claims, counterclaims, skullduggery, and government threats. When a flood sweeps you away, it’s always hard to find a little dry land to survey the extent and nature of the damage. Here’s my attempt to look beyond the daily drumbeat of this developing story (which, it is promised, will go on for weeks, if not months) and identify five urges essential to understanding the world Edward Snowden has helped us glimpse.  Continue Reading…

We need to overturn the system

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In conversation with alt-Nobel winner Nnimmo Bassey – Published on rabble.ca, by ETHAN COX, June 15, 2013.

… Bassey is a Nigerian activist, author and poet, who has devoted his life to fighting for a healthy environment. He is the Director of the newly formed Health of Mother Earth Foundation HOMEF, the coordinator of Oil Watch International (no website found) and was, until last year, the Executive Director of Environmental Rights Action ERA, a grassroots NGO he founded, and the Chairperson of Friends of the Earth – International (FOI-I).    Continue Reading…

Putting the Culture Back in Agriculture

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Reviving Native Food and Farming Traditions – Published on Toward Freedom, by Tory Field and Beverly Bell, June 10, 2013.

“At one point ‘agriculture’ was about the culture of food. Losing that culture, in favor of an American cultural monocrop, joined with an agricultural monocrop, puts us in a perilous state…” says food and Native activist Winona LaDuke.[i]

Her lament is an agribusiness executive’s dream. The CEO of the H.J. Heinz Company said, “Once television is there, people, whatever shade, culture, or origin, want roughly the same things.”[ii] The same things are based on the same technology, same media sources, same global economy, and same food.   Continue Reading…

Chemical, used by Monsanto, found in urine of Europeans – study

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Published on Russia Today RT, June 14, 2013.

Residents of 18 European states have been tested positively to traces of glyphosate, a globally used weed killer, the study says. It remains unclear how the chemical used on Monsanto GMO corps got in people’s bodies.

It turns out that 44 per cent of volunteers had it in their urine, but it is yet unclear how the herbicide got into their systems.    Continue Reading…

Germany and the euro: The euro zone looks anxiously to Karlsruhe

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Published on The Economist, June 12, 2013.

THE two central bankers, both 40-somethings and friends since university days, pointedly sat next to each other in the courtroom on June 11th. Jens Weidmann has risen through the office of Chancellor Angela Merkel to become president of the Bundesbank. Jörg Asmussen has moved via the finance ministry to the executive board of the European Central Bank. But however amicable, they came to the constitutional court in Karlsruhe (pictured) on opposing sides of the argument.   Continue Reading…

China-Africa relations: looking beyond the critics

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Published on Pambazuka News, by Babette Zoumara and Abdul-Rauf Ibrahim, June 6, 2013.

Africa is lacking a clear and unified policy in terms of how it relates to China. In developing further social, economic and political ties with China, African leaders must develop a coherent and structured plan to promote the interests of Africans … // Continue Reading…

What inspires Turkey’s protest movement?

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Elected government has delivered strong economic growth but activists think prime minister Erdogan has a hidden agenda – Published on AlJazeera, by Umut Uras, June 5, 2013.

Istanbul, Turkey – Nobody predicted that a minor sit-in protest, launched to prevent the demolition of trees in a park in the heart of Istanbul, would soon turn into unprecedented country-wide demonstrations and riots against the Turkish government. Use of force by the police against peaceful protesters in Taksim’s Gezi Park, combined with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s escalating statements about the incident, have been the last straw for many Turks frustrated with the policies of the self-defined conservative Justice and Development Party (AKP).  Continue Reading…

World Environment Day 2013: Five Ways to Preserve Food and Prevent Waste

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Published on Nourishing the Planet, a Worldwatch.org Blog, by Sophie Wenzlau, June 5, 2013.

The theme of this year’s World Environment Day—celebrated today—is Think.Eat.Save., a United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) campaign aimed at curbing food waste and food loss.   Continue Reading…

The Poor People’s Campaign: Our Next Steps

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Published on Global Research.ca, by staff, June 3, 2013.

… There is so much to write about that inspired us:  the courageous delegation of women from Selma, Alabama, who drove the entire night — after their bus was cancelled — to be able to speak in defense of voting rights, their rendition of Freedom Songs kept us marching and marching; the young children and participants with disabilities, seniors who walked with canes, who wouldn’t stop;  the families and victims of police terror, especially the tenacious and spirited group who came from the Justice for Alan Blueford Coalition in Oakland, California; the group of occupy youth and members of Guitarmy who marched all night; the organizers like Bob Ross, Prince Georges County NAACP head, who helped keep the march going; the OUR Walmart workers who inspired marchers to defy Walmart bosses and County Police and set up a picket right at the Super Walmart’s doors … // Continue Reading…

Everyday Anarchist: The Modern Success

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Interview with Noam Chomsky, published on Modern Success (now on ZNet), by Michael S. Wilson, April 14, 2013.

Everyone knows what one looks like.  They’ve got the leather boots.  Maybe some chains.  Trench-coats.  They wait in dark alleys with perfectly-spherical bombs.  A lot of ‘em like to spike up their hair, or shave the side of their head, or do weird things like that to their appearance.  You know what I mean.  Everyone knows.

That’s what an anarchist looks like: … // Continue Reading…

… on poverty and more …

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Distorted Stats: Europe’s Youth Unemployment Fallacy

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Published on Spiegel Online International, by Alexander Demling, May 28, 2013.

The oft-cited statistic that half of young Spaniards are unemployed is wrong. In reality, about one-fifth of those under 25 are looking for work. Nevertheless, outreach programs created by Germany focus on young people alone, though critics say other groups desperately need help too … //

… A More Realistic Assessment:    Continue Reading…

Cereal Banks Protect Against Famine and Empower Women Across the Sahel

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… innovation of the Month – Published on nourishing the planet, by Caitlin Aylward, May 22, 2013.

… In 2009, WFP and Care established exclusively women-operated cereal banks to help ensure the availability of grain supplies year round. These community cereal banks loan grain below market price, helping protect against market speculation, and enabling even the poorest women to purchase food for their families during times of scarcity. The women are expected to repay the loans, but at very low interest rates and only after they have harvested their own crops.   Continue Reading…

HEADLINES MANUFACTURING CONTEMPT

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The New York Times on Venezuela and Honduras: A Case of Journalistic Misconduct – Published on NACLA, by Keane Bhatt, May 8, 2013 (also on NYTimes eXaminer).

The day after Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez died, New York Times reporter Lizette Alvarez provided a sympathetic portrayal of “outpourings of raucous celebration and, to many, cautious optimism for the future” in Miami-Dade County, Florida. Her article, “Venezuelan Expatriates See a Reason to Celebrate,” noted that many had come to Miami to escape Chávez’s “iron grip on the nation,” and quoted a Venezuelan computer software consultant who said, bluntly: “We had a dictator. There were no laws, no justice.”1   Continue Reading…

Declaration of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America ALBA

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Students, Youth Movements, Women’s Organizations, Labor Unions, Farmers – Published on Global Research.ca, by staff, May 24, 2013 (Translation: Jordan Bishop, Canada).

First Continental Assembly of Social Movements towards ALBA “Hugo Chávez Frías” – Students, Youth Movements, Women’s Organizations, Labor Unions, Farmers: Declaration of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America ALBA.   Continue Reading…

Challenging the Claim that Microfinance Loans Result in Poverty Reduction

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Confessions of a Microfinance Heretic bravely challenges the hype of microfinance loans as a solution to poverty – Published on UTNE, by Hugh Sinclair, May 2013.

“I’m a dodgy moneylender, exploiting the poor with useless, overpriced loans, ideally obliging their children into forced labor in the process.” This did not go down well. I had been introduced to yet another gathering of bright-eyed microfinance experts at yet another microfinance conference, and I had incorrectly assumed that irony and sarcasm were within their grasp. They were not. I attempted to redeem myself. “Guys, I’m joking … it was a joke. I’m a microfinance consultant, we’re all cool … sorry.”   Continue Reading…

free or imposed Aid: help or meddling

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The Question of Aid: Help or Hindrance in African Economic Development, 91.30 min, uploaded by icdchannel, Feb 1, 2011;

Spotlight on Philanthropy: European Zeitgeist 2011, 23.36 min, uploaded by zeitgeistminds, May 17, 2011: Increasingly, leaders are looking beyond day-to-day business and seeking to make a wider positive contribution to the world. What can we learn from those who are making a difference already, and what is the best way to help – is aid a help or a hindrance to development? This panel discussion explores the practicalities of philanthropy, learning from the experiences of committed individuals who have already made remarkable achievements for their cause.

It’s time for Spain’s indignados to grow up

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Published on Left Foot Forward, by TOM GILL, MAY 16, 2013.

One of the great weaknesses of Spain’s indignados movement, which yesterday celebrated its second birthday, has been its failure to pursue a strategy that turns power in the streets into the real power needed to change the world.

In the November 2011 general elections, six months after Spaniards occupied town squares across the country, including famously Madrid’s Plaza del Sol, the forces of reaction were projected into government.  Continue Reading…

Portugal’s Left Bloc Confronts Austerity

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Published on The   Bullet, The Socialist Project’s E-Bulletin, No. 823, Interview with Francisco Louçã, by Mark Bergfeld, May 17, 2013.

Mark Bergfeld (MB): Last year Germany’s Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble labeled Portugal “the good pupil of the Eurozone.” Now Portugal faces a difficult economic outlook. Unemployment, for example, has hit 18 per cent. The PSD-CDS coalition government is demanding more time to implement its austerity measures. What are the underlying reasons for Portugal’s downward trend?    Continue Reading…

As Europe is provincialized: a reply to Etienne Balibar

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Europe can make sense only insofar as it becomes a space which makes it easier to get rid of the fear that the crisis is disseminating within the social fabric, a space where it is more viable to struggle against poverty, exploitation, and discrimination – Published on openDemocracy, by SANDRO MEZZADRA, May 13, 2013.

Yes, Étienne Balibar is right: we need “immediately, to contemplate a restructuring of the Union for the purpose of building another Europe”. We should be grateful to him both for the emphasis on “immediate” and for the emphasis on “restructuring”. There is a need to act now in Europe, and this action cannot take for granted the existence of the political forces that need to be mobilized, the social coalitions capable of supporting such a mobilization, intellectual energies to be activated, the institutional channels and frameworks to be addressed.   Continue Reading…

Austerity Has Lost All Credibility & Threatens Social Upheaval

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Published on ZNet, by Carl Bloice, May 13, 2013.

When Michael Higgins, the president of Ireland, finished speaking he received a standing ovation from members of the European Parliament. In a stirring April 17 address to the delegates meeting in Strasbourg, he said the continent’s policy makers must not “ignore the fact that European citizens are suffering the consequences of actions and opinions of bodies such as rating agencies, which, unlike parliaments, are unaccountable.”   Continue Reading…