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The Scientific Case for Outlawing Guns | MIT Technology Review

The Scientific Case for Outlawing Guns  | MIT Technology Review | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
A new study suggests that U.S. laws should go further to limit gun ownership and improve enforcement.
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Jesse's Café Américain: The Scandal in America That Is Hidden In Plain Sight - Privilege Blindness

Jesse's Café Américain: The Scandal in America That Is Hidden In Plain Sight - Privilege Blindness | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

One of the great marvels of the time is how effectively well-funded propaganda campaigns and a captive mainstream media have distorted the peoples' view of reality so that they act as if they are sleep-walking.

An ongoing trend in the US has been a tax code that favors large multinational corporations with loopholes and subsidies that far too often result in an effective tax rate of close to zero, despite booming corporate profits in the face of a long stagnation in median family income and wages.  

The real unemployment numbers are shockingly high, and those jobs that are available are often part time and poorly paid.   Justice is openly administered in ways that give the powerful a free pass on grossly criminal activity, from laundering drug money to financial racketeering. The rigging of prices and markets by powerful interests, and the lack of effective prosecution of such grave abuses of power, is something that seems to be de facto government policy.


This places small private businesses and individuals at a distinct disadvantage with regard to economic viability in the marketplace.  It fosters consolidation and monopoly.  It lends itself to a cynicism that is undermining the conscience of many of those who have sworn oaths of office.  It isolates dissent to corrals and 'free speech zones.'  It breaks up peaceful gatherings of protest with pepper spray, bullets, and clubs.  It pollutes the internet with campaigns of disinformation, and silences the voices of journalists.

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Open Source Seeds Launching Today at U. of Wisconsin

Open Source Seeds Launching Today at U. of Wisconsin | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The Open Source Seeds Initiative brings plant seeds to market that are completely free of intellectual property limitations.
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Years of Living Dangerously — What It Is, Who’s In It, & What It’s All About

Years of Living Dangerously — What It Is, Who’s In It, & What It’s All About | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

Last week something rare and extraordinarily positive occurred on American television. Fortunately, through YouTube and 350.org, the rest of the world got to see it too.

“Something positive?” a critic questions. “If climate change is as bad as you tree-hugger people claim it is, how can anything about it be positive?”

The phenomenon tends to inspire either respect and fear or laughter and derision in the United States—when it isn’t simply being ignored. (Chart below shows Yale’s take on US believability statistics.) Fortunately, the rest of the world has a little more common sense than we do.




 

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Poland Uses Ukraine to Push Coal - Inter Press Service

Poland Uses Ukraine to Push Coal - Inter Press Service | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
A European ‘energy union’ plan proposed by Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk as an EU response to the crisis in Ukraine could be a Trojan horse for fossil
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Nuking the sky: Unintended consequences

Nuking the sky: Unintended consequences | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

The planet is warming and our climate changing. As political leaders around the world fail to reach agreement on how to curb the greenhouse-gas emissions that are the underlying problem, others are touting a more radical way to combat climate change: "geoengineering." The idea behind geoengineering is to deliberately tinker with the climate system to counteract man-made climate change. Schemes suggested include making clouds and crops brighter so that they reflect more sunlight back out into space, using high-altitude balloons to inject aerosols into the stratosphere and cool the Earth, or sucking carbon dioxide out of the air so that it can't trap heat and contribute to global warming. In the absence of a planet B, hacking the planet is a possible plan B.

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A Fierce Green Fire: The Battle for a Living Planet Premiers Earth Day on PBS

A Fierce Green Fire: The Battle for a Living Planet Premiers Earth Day on PBS | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The documentary—which will air Tuesday, Earth Day, on PBS stations nationwide—opens with a stirring montage of idyllic nature
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The Good Stuff – Kids, Parents and Climate

The Good Stuff – Kids, Parents and Climate | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Who is first in line to stand up and protect our kids’ future? Busy parents! It’s The Good Stuff – Episode 15: Kids, Parents and Climate http://bit.ly/1r3jT3P
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Why nuclear power may be the only way to avoid geoengineering

Why nuclear power may be the only way to avoid geoengineering | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Tom Wigley, a scientist at the University of Adelaide and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), is one of the world’s top climate researchers.
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Mind and habitat: Nuclear and climate threats, and the possibility of hope

Mind and habitat: Nuclear and climate threats, and the possibility of hope | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Though closely related, nuclear and climate threats have mostly been treated as separate entities. I, for example, have been immersed for more than a half century in psychological and historical aspects of nuclear weapons, but only during the last year or so have I begun a similar immersion in climate dangers. Why have people like me so neglected the climate dimension?
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This Company Has A 4-Day Work Week, Pays Its Workers A Full Salary And Is Super Successful

This Company Has A 4-Day Work Week, Pays Its Workers A Full Salary And Is Super Successful | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The CEO says he gets higher quality work and better morale when he gives his workers three-day weekends.
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Uranium miners dying from cancers, unexplained illnesses in Namibia

Uranium miners dying from cancers, unexplained illnesses in Namibia | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

Most cases coming from Rio Tinto’s Rössing mine, according to report.

 

Namibian miners who worked in uranium mines in the 1970s are dying of cancers and unexplained illnesses, a study based on questionnaires of current and former workers at Rio Tinto’s (ASX, LON:RIO) Rössing mine has shown.

 

The report, produced by Earthlife Namibia and the Labour Resource and Research Institute, states that the victims used to dig uranium ore for the British and US militaries bombs production and their and civil nuclear power programs.

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Five anthropogenic factors that will radically alter northern forests in 50 years

Five anthropogenic factors that will radically alter northern forests in 50 years | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
In the most densely forested and most densely populated quadrant of the United States, forests reflect two centuries of human needs, values and practices. Disturbances associated with those needs, such as logging and clearing forests for agriculture and development, have set the stage for management ...
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From conspiracy theories to climate change denial, a cognitive psychologist explains

From conspiracy theories to climate change denial, a cognitive psychologist explains | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Stephan Lewandowsky, chair of cognitive psychology at the University of Bristol, answered questions posed by the public on Reddit. The Conversation has curated the highlights.
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Keyhole Garden: a DIY African-style Raised Bed

Keyhole Garden: a DIY African-style Raised Bed | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The keyhole garden combines a raised bed with a centralized space for compost and water. Learn how to build one of these simple kitchen gardens.
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Wireless power transfer achieved at 5-meter distance

Wireless power transfer achieved at 5-meter distance | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
A great improvement has been demonstrated in the distance that electric power can travel wirelessly. Researchers developed the 'Dipole Coil Resonant System' for an extended range of inductive power transfer, up to 5 meters between transmitter and receiver coils. "Our technology proved the possibility of a new remote power delivery mechanism that has never been tried at such a long distance. Although the long-range wireless power transfer is still in an early stage of commercialization and quite costly to implement, we believe that this is the right direction for electric power to be supplied in the future. Just like we see Wi-Fi zones everywhere today, we will eventually have many Wi-Power zones at such places as restaurants and streets that provide electric power wirelessly to electronic devices," they say.
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Exploding Executive Compensation Cannot Be Solved With Performance-Linked Pay

High executive pay is in the news again, this time in a weekend piece at the New York Times. The high pay of executives is of interest because their "supersalaries" are driving a healthy chunk of income inequality, especially the rising income share of the top 1 percent. The reason it is so high, many argue, is that setting the compensation of top executives is fraught with uncertainty and driven by compensation consulting methods that are absurd on their face. Moreover, the compensation is set by corporate board members who are often friendly with the management and are often executives in other companies as well (meaning they have an interest in pushing up executive pay norms).

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Christine Bader: Conversation With a Corporate Idealist

Christine Bader: Conversation With a Corporate Idealist | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Girl meets Big Oil. Girl falls in love with Big Oil. And then? First-time author Christine Bader has crafted a narrative that is equal parts inspiring and…
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EPA Gives BP ‘Get Out of Jail Free Card’ on 4th Anniversary of Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Disaster

EPA Gives BP ‘Get Out of Jail Free Card’ on 4th Anniversary of Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Disaster | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Today is the fourth anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon explosion, which killed 11 workers and
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Antitrust in the New Gilded Age

Antitrust in the New Gilded Age | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
We’re in a new gilded age of wealth and power similar to the first gilded age when the nation’s antitrust laws were enacted. Those laws should prevent or bust up concentrations of economic power that...
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Lack of social licence

Lack of social licence | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The federal government has the authority to approve Northern Gateway without the support of a majority of residents. The question for the Prime Minister and his cabinet is should they ignore the will of the people, particularly when they've made their wishes known in a formal vote?
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Health in Africa: Corruption and misplaced priorities

Health in Africa: Corruption and misplaced priorities | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

In April 2001, member states of the African Union met in the Nigerian capital of Abuja and pledged that, by 2015, each nation would devote at least 15 percent of its governmental expenditures to public health. Prospects for meeting that goal seem poor. As of 2009, the proportion of government expenditures devoted to health had actually declined in 11 African nations. As of 2011, though the proportion of government expenditures devoted to health had increased across the continent (to 11 percent from 9 percent), only six countries had reached the 15-percent goal.

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Who Are the Koch Brothers and What Do They Want?

Who Are the Koch Brothers and What Do They Want? | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

The truth is that the agenda of the Koch brothers is to move this country from a democratic society with a strong middle class to an oligarchic form of society in which the economic and political life of the nation are controlled by a handful of billionaires.

 

As a result of the disastrous Citizens United Supreme Court decision, billionaires and large corporations can now spend an unlimited amount of money to influence the political process. The results of that decision are clear. In the coming months and years the Koch brothers and other extraordinarily wealthy families will spend billions of dollars to elect right-wing candidates to the Senate, the House, governors' mansions and the presidency of the United States. These billionaires already own much of our economy. That, apparently, is not enough. Now, they want to own the United States government as well.

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Science Society Seeks to Shift Dialogue on Climate Change by Showing "What We Know"

Science Society Seeks to Shift Dialogue on Climate Change by Showing "What We Know" | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The American Academy for the Advancement of Sciences aims to convince Americans that action is needed to address global warming
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More, bigger wildfires burning western US, study shows

More, bigger wildfires burning western US, study shows | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
Wildfires across the western United States have been getting bigger and more frequent over the last 30 years – a trend that could continue as climate change causes temperatures to rise and drought to become more severe in the coming decades, according to new research.
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Food shortages could be most critical world issue by mid-century

Food shortages could be most critical world issue by mid-century | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it
The world is less than 40 years away from a food shortage that will have serious implications for people and governments, according to a top scientist at the U.S. Agency for International Development.
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Agricultural Subsidies Remain a Staple in the Industrial World | Worldwatch Institute

Agricultural Subsidies Remain a Staple in the Industrial World | Worldwatch Institute | Sustain Our Earth | Scoop.it

In 2012, the most recent year with data, agricultural subsidies totaled an estimated $486 billion in the top 21 food-producing countries in the world. These countries—the members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and seven other countries (Brazil, China, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Russia, South Africa, and Ukraine)—are responsible for almost 80 percent of global agricultural value added in the world.

 

Agricultural subsidies are not equally distributed around the globe. In fact, Asia spends more than the rest of the world combined. China pays farmers an unparalleled $165 billion. Significant subsidies are also provided by Japan ($65 billion), Indonesia ($28 billion), and South Korea ($20 billion).

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