Daily Archives: May 28, 2014

Noam Chomsky and Glenn Greenwald “How the Law Is Used to Destroy Equality and Protect the Powerful”


Noam Chomsky Videos

Published on Jan 9, 2014

The basis for power elite membership is institutional power, namely an influential position within a prominent private or public organization. One study of power elites in the USA under George W. Bush identified 7,314 institutional positions of power encompassing 5,778 individuals.[15] A later study of US society found that the demographics of this elite group broke down as follows:

Age Corporate leaders average about 60 years of age. The heads of foundations, law, education, and civic organizations average around 62 years of age. Government-sector members about 56.
Gender Women are barely represented among corporate leadership in the institutional elite and women only contribute roughly 20 percent in the political realm. They do appear more among top positions when it comes to cultural affairs, education, and foundations.
Ethnicity White Anglo-Saxons dominate in the power elite, with Protestants representing about 80 percent of the top business leaders and about 73 percent of members of Congress.
Education Nearly all the leaders are college-educated with almost half having advanced degrees. About 54 percent of the big-business leaders and 42 percent of the government elite are graduates of just 12 heavily endowed, prestigious universities.
Social Clubs Most holders of top position in the power elite possess exclusive membership in one or more social clubs. About a third belong to a small number of especially prestigious clubs in major cities like New York, Chicago, Boston, and D.C.[16]

In the 1970s an organized set of policies promoted reduced taxes, especially for the wealthy, and a steady corrosion of the welfare safety net.[17] Starting with legislation in the 1980s, the wealthy banking community successfully lobbied for reduced regulation.[18] The wide range of financial and social capital accessible to the power elite gives their members heavy influence in economic and political decision making, allowing them to move toward attaining desired outcomes. Sociologist Christopher Doob gives a hypothetical alternative stating that these elite individuals would consider themselves the overseers of the national economy, appreciating that it is not only a moral but a practical necessity to focus beyond their group interests. Doing so would hopefully alleviate various destructive conditions affecting large numbers of less affluent citizens.

Mills determined that there is an “inner core” of the power elite involving individuals that are able to move from one seat of institutional power to another. They therefore have a wide range of knowledge and interests in many influential organizations, and are, as Mills describes, “professional go-betweens of economic, political, and military affairs.”[19] Relentless expansion of capitalism and the globalizing of economic and military power binds leaders of the power elite into complex relationships with nation states that generate global-scale class divisions. Sociologist, Manuel Castells, writes in The Rise of the Network Society that contemporary globalization does not mean that “everything in the global economy is global.”[20] So, a global economy becomes characterized by fundamental social inequalities with respect to “the level of integration, competitive potential and share of the benefits from economic growth.”[21] Castells cites a kind of “double movement” where on one hand, “valuable segments of territories and people” become “linked in the global networks of value making and wealth appropriation,” while, on the other, “everything and everyone” that is not valued by established networks gets “switched off… and ultimately discarded.”[21] The wide-ranging effects of global capitalism ultimately affect everyone on the planet as economies around the world come to depend on the functioning of global financial markets, technologies, trade and labor.

Global Climate Change
Environmental Justice
Environment Ethics

How remote sensing can help address food security around the world

NASA Goddard

Published on May 28, 2014

When floods, droughts, and other natural disasters hit isolated and poor regions of the world, it can have devastating impacts on the local price of food. NASA Goddard research scientist Molly Brown is using satellite data to investigate and model the relationship between weather shocks and food prices in order to improve food security around the world. In this live studio talk she discusses her research and vision.

This video is public domain and can be downloaded at: http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/goto?11554

Like our videos? Subscribe to NASA’s Goddard Shorts HD podcast:
http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/vis/iTunes/f…

Global Climate Change
Environmental Justice
Environment Ethics
Food-Matters

Urban Gardeners Grow Crops in Spare Spaces


National Geographic

Published on May 28, 2014

Urban living does not always allow space or conditions for gardening. But more and more people are finding ways to use limited resources to grow vegetables and even raise chickens. Follow some urban gardeners in Washington, D.C., and meet a garden designer who helps them make the best with what’s available.

Global Climate Change
Environmental Justice
Environment Ethics
Food-Matters

Not All North Dakotans Favor Fracking. Meet “No Fracking Way, Turtle Mountain”

GRITtv

Published on May 28, 2014

In November 2011, the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa in northern North Dakota became the first preemptively to ban oil and gas drilling (‘fracking) on their reservation. Cedar Gillette of “No Fracking Way Turtle Mountain” told GRITtv’s Laura Flanders why. Find more from Flanders at GRITtv.org.

Global Climate Change
Environmental Justice
Environment Ethics

Palm oil, deforestation and UNEA


UNEP

Published on May 28, 2014

Is there such a thing as sustainable palm oil? Can UNEA help ensure all palm oil is forest and fauna friendly?

Global Climate Change
Environmental Justice
Environment Ethics

GEF 5: Pavel Palacios Chavez, Director of natural areas, Ministry of Environment, Mexico

RTCC

Published on May 28, 2014

GEF 5 ( /05/2014) –

Global Climate Change
Environmental Justice
Environment Ethics

GEF 5: Ralph Sims, Coordinating lead author, Working Group 3 – Transport, IPCC

RTCC

Published on May 28, 2014

GEF 5 ( /05/2014) –

Global Climate Change
Environmental Justice
Environment Ethics