Seven years ago the central government began allowing city residents to divert a proportion of their income-tax payments to a furusato of their choice. The response has been overwhelming. In the last fiscal year rural towns earned ¥14 billion ($1.2 billion) from such contributions.
Rob Duke's insight:
Can you imagine doing this in the U.S.? Send money home....
ON MAY 7th Britain is holding a general election to choose a new government. The country has one of the oldest electoral systems in the world, which has evolved...
Rob Duke's insight:
It's a non-elected head of state, but Parliament really holds the power; and, whoever commands the most Members of Parliament (MP's) is the Prime Minister. Increasingly, this means having to make deals with smaller parties. If one cannot command a majority of one's own party, then concessions are made for joint rule (accepting some of that party's policies in exchange for their allegiance).
I’ve written about crime and the NFL before, particularly on domestic violence (“The Rate of Domestic Violence Arrests Among NFL Players”). Murder arrests were also part of the data set I used, and show how Hernandez’s case fits into the broader crime rates in the NFL. Arrest rates among NFL players are likely1 well below the national rates for the comparable age group, pretty much across the board. Overall, police arrest NFL players about 14 percent as often as other 25-29 year old males, but that ratio varies widely by type of offense.
In 2001, the American Political Science Association formed a Task Force on Inequality and American Democracy; a few years later, it concluded that growing economic inequality was threatening fundamental American political institutions. In 2009, Oxford University Press published both a seven-hundred-page “Handbook of Economic Inequality” and a collection of essays about the political consequences of economic inequality whose argument is its title: “The Unsustainable American State.” There’s a global version of this argument, too. “Inequality Matters,” a 2013 report by the United Nations, took the view—advanced by the economist Joseph Stiglitz in his book “The Price of Inequality”—that growing income inequality is responsible for all manner of political instability, as well as for the slowing of economic growth worldwide.
The causes of income inequality are much disputed; so are its costs. And knowing the numbers doesn’t appear to be changing anyone’s mind about what, if anything, should be done about it.
In “The Age of Acquiescence: The Life and Death of American Resistance to Organized Wealth and Power” (Little, Brown), Steve Fraser fumes that what’s gone wrong with political discourse in America is that the left isn’t willing to blame anyone for anything anymore.
The growth of inequality isn’t inevitable. But, insofar as Americans have been unable to adopt measures to reduce it, the numbers might seem to suggest that the problem doesn’t lie with how Americans treat one another’s kids, as lousy as that is. It lies with Congress.
Cannabis is the most commonly used drug among adults who drink, besides tobacco, yet no study has directly compared those who use cannabis and alcohol simultaneously, or at the exact same time, versus those who use both separately and on a regular...
A new study has thrown light on how people can become killers in certain situations, showing how brain activity varies according to whether or not killing is seen as justified.
The study, led by Monash researcher Dr Pascal Molenberghs, School of Psychological Sciences, is published in the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience.
Participants in the study played video games in which they imagined themselves to be shooting innocent civilians (unjustified violence) or enemy soldiers (justified violence). Their brain activity was recorded via functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) while they played.
Dr Molenberghs said the results provided important insights into how people in certain situations, such as war, are able to commit extreme violence against others.
Tickets for illegally talking on a hand-held cellphone and texting while driving have fallen over the past three years, puzzling safety officials, police and motorists who believe these forms of distracted driving remain rampant and a growing menace on our roads.
Efforts to tame the fast-growing cybercrime threat took centre stage at the United Nations Crime Congress under way in Doha, Qatar, as a diverse group of experts in the field urged strong partnerships between the public and private sectors to create a safer digital landscape.
Mao is still portrayed as the nation’s father. His image is everywhere. Every banknote bears his face, and his portrait hangs at the entrance to the Forbidden City. Though Mr Xi has crafted a narrative about the hardships he and others suffered during the Cultural Revolution, criticising Mao himself remains blasphemous. Once people start to laugh at the emperor, all authority is in doubt.
Vermont and New Hampshire are similar in a lot of ways -- they’re both small, heavily rural New England states that root for the Red Sox. But when it comes to taxes, they could hardly be more diffe...
Rob Duke's insight:
Alaska needs to revamp its tax system. Here's a list of some best practices from 49 other states. As I've said before, the revenue stream should be diversified and spread across sectors. A small sales tax on both services and goods (2-4%), a small income tax (5%), Gas tax (20¢ gal.), Sin taxes (booze, cigarettes, marijuana), fees & permits, Tariff on imports (encourage local manufacturing and collect revenue on those profits that exit the state---I'm looking at you Walmart!), state shares in the property tax (to pay for schools throughout the state). To the greatest extent possible taxes and fees should be tied to the service that they pay for....
A form of therapy specializing in neurosis, aimed at bringing unconscious contents to consciousness; also called analytic therapy, based on the school of thought developed by C.G. Jung called analytical (or complex) psychology.
[Analysis] is only a means for removing the stones from the path of development, and not a method . . . of putting things into the patient that were not there before.
It is better to renounce any attempt to give direction, and simply try to throw into relief everything that the analysis brings to light, so that the patient can see it clearly and be able to draw suitable conclusions.
Anything he has not acquired himself he will not believe in the long run, and what he takes over from authority merely keeps him infantile.
In way too many schools across America, what used to be counted as childish misbehavior, even childish defiance, gets labeled as criminality. Our children are being turned over to the police and funneled into courtrooms for doing things that wouldn't...
The General Manager (GM) of a municipal department was repeatedly getting bad press for the all-too apparent failings in maintaining city roads, drainage, sewage, and water. Continuous breakdowns in water supply, blockages in main drains and sewers were inconveniencing city residents and creating high costs in property damage. City Council was being taken to court for several cases of significant damage exacerbated by its insurer’s reluctance to settle claims promptly or on a reasonable basis.
The GM was being accused and abused by the press, the residents, his superiors, elected councilors and by his managers and staff who were taking much of the heat. He fell seriously ill. While on sick leave the Mayor called him to discuss what he was going to do to address the growing storm of protest that was negatively affecting his chances of re-election. What did he have to say?
Up until now, his decisions were based on his lengthy experience with how to fix issues. In this new dilemma he was expected to come up with a ‘silver bullet’. But how?
voodooangel/Flickr On Monday, New York's attorney general announced that he had sent letters to 13 major retailers inquiring about their use of "on-call scheduling," which can make workers responsible for showing up at a moment's notice, or leave...
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