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News Why World Change is Necessary

Gross Domestic Product, Indeed

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'If you Google “gross” you will get a number of meanings. The first to show up is “unattractively large or bloated.” The second, the one we’ve been using in GDP, refers to the total amount of something, as opposed to net. If we apply the first definition to Gross Domestic Product, we get unattractively large, bloated Domestic Product. This makes a great deal of sense, because that’s exactly what our growth-at-all-costs economy has become: bloated to the point of being dangerous. For starters, we consume 1.5 Earth’s worth of stuff each year. That is, we consume more resources than can be renewed, which means we are depleting natural capital. So we are creating debt and calling it wealth. If we continue on our current trend, by 2050 we will be using over 2 Earth’s worth of natural capital. You want gross? Nothing could be grosser than continuing to exploit fossil fuels. Or take plastics. Talk about gross. We make about 100 million tons of plastics each year, and most if it gets thrown away. Plastics take hundreds of years or more to degrade, so the stuff accumulates – every decade we’ll add another billion or so tons to the biosphere. Already we have a giant garbage heap at least twice the size of Texas in the north Pacific composed largely of plastics. Some estimates put it at twice the size of the continental US – the difference in size depends on the concentrations used to define its boundaries. But either way, that’s big and gross, and getting bigger and grosser each year.' #livingincomeguaranteed

Shooting Ourselves: Mass Killings, Austerity, and the Breakdown of American Society

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And it would be vain to deny that we live in a very sick political climate. Last week, we cut food support to our poorest citizens. This week, the Democratic-controlled Senate and the Republican-controlled House will deliberate about how much further pain should be doled out on those same communities. Add to this the fact that unemployment benefits for 1.3 million Americans will run out by year end unless Congress takes action. Yet, despite the strong connection between hunger, joblessness, and violence, few are willing to suggest that political decisions of this kind impact mass killings. We attempt to address the problem through Thatcher’s lens, by focusing on the individual.

The dominance of privilege is shocking, says Major

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Sir John Major said last night he was appalled that ‘every single sphere of British influence’ in society was dominated by people who went to private school. The former prime minister said the dominance of a private-school educated elite and the well-heeled middle classes in the ‘upper echelons’ of public life was ‘truly shocking’.

Slumdogs of Slovakia: This city was given £51million when it was named European capital of culture... so why are Roma children still living in such horrifying squalor?

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These heartbreaking pictures show the squalid conditions that thousands of Roma children are forced to call home in the city of Kosice, Slovakia. The city, the largest in eastern Slovakia, received £51million when it was named the European Capital of Culture 2013 alongside Marseille, France. The money is to be invested into the city's infrastructure, creative industries and tourism. However, in the suburb of Lunik IX around 8,000 Slovakian Roma, most of them children, live in squalor in one of the world's worst slums.

Cameron pays 'Wizard of Oz' £500k to win him 2015 general election

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David Cameron has stepped up his planning for the General Election by giving his Australian ‘attack dog’ a new £500,000-a-year contract. Election strategist Lynton Crosby, who until now has been advising the Prime Minister part time, will receive the doubled salary for devoting himself full time over the 18 months until the vote in 2015. Mr Crosby, known as ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and an ‘evil genius’, has been credited with sharpening the Tories’ message over the past year. He is renowned for hard-hitting campaigns with so-called ‘dog- whistle’ policies on issues such as immigration and welfare.

Perpetual War: How Does the Global War on Terror Ever End?

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The day Obama was sworn in, a U.S. drone strike hit Yemen. It was the third such attack in that country in as many days. Despite the rhetoric from the president on the Capitol steps, there was abundant evidence that he would continue to preside over a country that is in a state of perpetual war.

Billionaires: Decline of the West, Rise of the Rest

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Who says we can't afford a Living Wage for everyone on this Planet? 'This surging list of billionaires is tribute to the growing inequality in almost all nations on earth. The richest man in the world, for example, is Carlos Slim of Mexico—with a net worth of $73 billion, comparable to a whopping 6.2% of Mexico’s GDP. The world’s third richest person is Spain’s retail king, Amancio Ortega, who has accumulated a net worth of $57 billion in a country where over a quarter of the people are now unemployed.'

The Most Important Labor Strike in the World Is Happening Right Now

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Many good points made about WHY encouraging prosperity for all the current sweatshop countries is actually a pro economy move and why we should stop seeing short term advantages in supporting cheap labor vs the long term advantages to support the whole world to move to a liveable wage. Interestingly Indonesia which still stands at the bottom of the pile of dung we have created, is demanding Universal Health Coverage as they understand that unless ALL are catered for and cared for, the world will never be a place that works for all and that we can be proud of. 'Indonesia is not just any developing country. It's the fourth most populous country in the world (after China, India, and the U.S.), and it's now a big sweatshop for global corporations. The country's minimum wage is about $200 a month, leaving vast swaths of Indonesia's workforce in poverty. '

After Sandy: New York's 'Perfect Storm' of Inequality in Wealth and Housing

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One year on, it's painfully clear that society's choices mean the hurricane hit our poorest communities harder than the well-to-do In the poor and marginalized communities of New York – mostly people of color – conditions were bad before Superstorm Sandy – and chaos ensued after. Sandy exposed millions of other New Yorkers to the sense of economic and environmental insecurity that clouds the lives of the poor every single day.

Grangemouth boss relaxes aboard £130million superyacht off South of France after crushing union demands on workers' pay

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The billionaire owner of the Grangemouth fuel refinery was spotted relaxing on his luxury yacht just hours after winning beating union bosses at the imperiled complex into submission. Jim Ratcliffe's company Ineos forced through a survival plan for the huge petrochemical complex in Falkirk, Scotland, which saw workers swallow a pay freeze, redundancies and changes to their pensions. And almost as soon as the ink dried on the humiliating deal, which also bans strike action at the plant for three years, Mr Ratcliffe jetted off to his luxurious ship, moored on the Cote d'Azur in the south of France.

How Much of JPMorgan's $13 Billion Fine Will Taxpayers Foot?

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JPMorgan—whose fraudulent mortgage claims helped take down the economy in 2008—will likely be able to write off its much-touted $13 billion fine as a business expense, meaning U.S. taxpayers would help foot the bill. "What is the point of fining JPMorgan these large amounts if the taxpayer is picking up the tab?" asks D.S. Wright, writing for FiredogLake. JPMorgan has reached a tentative agreement with the U.S. Justice Department to pay a record-setting $13 billion in fines. While negotiations are still ongoing, $9 billion of this penalty is expected to go to the government, while $4 billion will go to the Federal Housing Finance Agency to allegedly end up in the hands of customers who were swindled by the bank.

'Big Dollars, Little Sense': Community and Student Groups Debunk Charter School Mythology

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"BOE, after stealing $168 million from neighborhood schools, now wants 52 new charters," wrote the student advocacy group on their Facebook page. "Smells like privatization of public education!" "At the level of state and federal education policy," writes Stan Karp at Rethinking Schools, "charters are providing a reform cover for eroding the public school system and an investment opportunity for those who see education as a business rather than a fundamental institution of democratic civic life."

How the Wealthy Wage War on Democracy Itself

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'That the rich influence elections with their money is as obvious to most of us as the fact that rich people game the justice system by being able to hire the best lawyers, or that rich people are healthier because they can buy the best food and health care.'

Struggling to cope: 4.5 million people are behind with utility bill payments

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As many as 4.5million people say they are in arrears – and this is before the price hikes and winter weather sets in. This includes both customers getting behind with cash or cheque payments, making only partial payments or failing to make direct debit payments because they are overdrawn. Npower this week hiked up its prices by an eye-watering 10.4 per cent, following SSE and British Gas' lead - which announced crippling rises of 8.2 and 9.2 per cent respectively. The remaining three big energy suppliers are expected to follow suit in the next few days.

Father who wants five bedroom council house for nine (with one more on the way) children says he would 'go out robbing' if he didn't get his £32,000 a year benefits

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An unemployed father with nine children has said if he did not get his £32,000 a year in benefits he would be out robbing 'rich' people. Jobless Lee Miller, who has demanded a bigger council house for his enormous family, claims he would turn to petty crime because he has 'bills to pay'. The 40-year-old said he would travel to London and target the wealthy to provide for his children.

Welfare Reform Is Leaving More In Deep Poverty

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The US Census Bureau reports that the number of Americans suffering significant hardships, such as having utilities cut off, getting evicted, or suffering food shortages, has escalated sharply during the recession. Between 2005 and 2011, nearly 7 million additional people were unable to make a mortgage or rent payment, suggesting that as the nation's last-ditch safety net for people in really dire straits, TANF, is not working. Given that science is now showing just how damaging the stress of poverty is to children and their health and intellectual development, maybe it's finally time for welfare reform to be reformed in a way that gives poor kids a fair shot at a decent future.

US drone strikes are tantamount to war crimes, says report by human rights group

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The killing of Pakistanis in US-led drone strikes are tantamount to war crimes, claim the family of a grandmother killed as she gathered vegetables for her family. Mamana Bibi's grandchildren watched as the 68-year-old was killed by missile fire in the North Waziristan tribal region, close to the Afghan border, last October. Her family today backed a report compiled by Amnesty International, due to be published tomorrow, in which the London-based human rights group calls on the US to comply with international law and investigate the killings.

Blogs Education and Solutions

All Countries should ratify the Chemical Weapons Convention

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According to a study released by the Switzerland-based International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health in July 2010, “the increases in cancer, leukaemia and infant mortality and perturbations of the normal human population birth sex ratio in Fallujah are significantly greater than those reported for the survivors of the A-Bombs at Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945.”

Green Economics - The Newest Fad?

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What are the New Economics movements as 'Green Economics' missing? Can we set ourselves up to save the planet without having a Living Income Guaranteed in place?

To be Clear. As a Woman and As a Mother, I DO NOT support military action by the United States in Syria.

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War is not a means to an end. That sort of logic means that more blood will be shed. More people die and this is a fact that is no longer acceptable. It doesn’t make sense to risk more life while we continue to spend money on a war that gives support to the Major Corporations – when clearly we cannot afford to keep making the rich richer while the rest of us remain poor. There are other solutions/choices that we can come together to investigate.

Living Income Guaranteed and the Rise of the Machine

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What is the machine replacing but the human labor point? By replacing human labor what we have already seen is that many people lose their jobs and even those that remain employed, end up receiving lower incomes with only the few at the top receiving higher incomes. In this way it is ensured that those that do make the decisions, do not question the system; those that do not make the decisions have no choice, because otherwise they will have no job because of their diminished bargaining power in an economy with high unemployment.

Living Income Guaranteed and Equal Currency

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Is the way currencies and exchange rates operate actually within the benefit of the economy? How can we change our currency / exchange system to ensure a stable economy and effective market? How do currencies fit within the Living Income Guaranteed?

My Wealth Makes the World a Better Place

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So now, those people who have money live like they are, through their wealth, allowing other people to exist and "make a living" - even though it is not enough to allow for what any of us would call "living" - rather call it "surviving". The poor should be grateful to the rich for giving them these jobs. If the rich weren't rich, then there would be no jobs for anyone. Because that makes sense.

BIG Pilot Project Namibia: a Perspective

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The project was based on giving a community a 100 Namibian dollars a month as a basic Income. Now, first point is to understand that Namibian dollars are not American dollars, it is very easy to mistake this point. so to give you at the current exchange rate an estimate, a 100 Namibian dollars = 10 American Dollars approximately, so it is certainly not a Basic Income that is being given, it is not making any significant change, it does not impact the ‘dollar a day’ poverty bracket, it doesn’t even take the person over that. So from the perspective of what a Basic Income should be, this is hardly a ‘Pilot Project,’ it’s more a feel-good project and certainly not something with which one can sway a government to implement a Basic Income Project.

How Companies Justify Poverty Wages: The Solution

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The restaurant chain McDonald’s, pays it’s employees a pathetically low wage of $7.40 per hour when it could clearly well afford to honor and respect it’s employees by offering a living wage…PAYING PEOPLE JUST ENOUGH TO SURVIVE, TO KEEP THEM OCCUPIED = NO TIME TO REALLY INVESTIGATE A SOLUTION that will CHANGE THE SYSTEM TO ONE THAT SERVES ALL HUMAN BEINGS AND NOT JUST A FEW LUCKY families.

Planet Earth: How Would Your Life Change if a Basic Income was Guaranteed? -

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Once that fear for survival is no longer 'needed' and you are not bound to a certain 9 to 5 job just to ensure your survival and feed your children, there's so much more you can do, you can educate yourself further, you can meet new social networks and get to know new things, you can find out what you are good at and how you can best contribute to your world, society, your own life. You can make your passion your profession. This would be a huge gain on both the personal and the societal level. - See more at: http://misfitsoftheshockingtruth.blogspot.com/2013/07/439-planet-earth-how-would-your-life.html#sthash.lqDqa9bY.dpuf

Common Core: Selling Children’s Future

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Education is most effective when it meets the needs of the students. But who defines these needs? If a person is poor their primary need is to make money. Likewise they would want to ensure that their children have money. For the poor, money and it’s acquisition supersedes over all other considerations. Practicality becomes the priority. The idea of a leisurely education, with time to consider ideas and problems – with time to develop the real skills of critical thinking – is a luxury only those with money can afford.

The End of Privatization of Warfare with Basic Income Guaranteed

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With no democratic oversight, with nothing and no one to hold these companies accountable we now exist in a strange and scary land of militarized privatization… and when the UN starts outsourcing wars to companies like the British G4S we may be tempted to grab our muskets and run for the hills or we may be ready to stop running and start supporting a viable alternative to this madness – Luckily there is such an alternative: Basic Income Guaranteed.

Less Stress for Children with Basic Income Guaranteed

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Economic factors are the cause of most of the stress for children in the world today. The World Bank estimates in 2003, there were 1.2 billion out of the developing world’s 4.8 billion people living on $1 per day, while another 2.8 billion are living on less than $2 per day.

Poverty Lines, how would you like Yours?

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The common international poverty line has in the past been roughly $1 a day.In 2008, the World Bank came out with a revised figure of $1.25 at 2005 purchasing-power parity (PPP). Could YOU live on that?

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