Daily Archives: April 21, 2017

Liebig’s law of the minimum

Liebig’s law of the minimum
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Liebig’s law of the minimum, often simply called Liebig’s law or the law of the minimum, is a principle developed in agricultural science by Carl Sprengel (1828) and later popularized by Justus von Liebig. It states that growth is controlled not by the total amount of resources available, but by the scarcest resource (limiting factor). The law has also been applied in biological populations and ecosystem models for factors such as sunlight or mineral nutrients.

The Rediscovery of Alexander Chayanov

Günther Schmitt,The Rediscovery of Alexander Chayanov,” History of Political Economy Winter 1992 24(4): 925-965; doi:10.1215/00182702-24-4-925

Chayanov’s Economic Analysis in Anthropology

E. Paul Durrenberger, “Chayanov’s Economic Analysis in Anthropology,” Journal of Anthropological Research, Vol. 36, No. 2 (Summer, 1980), pp. 133-148.

Finding Teachable Moments In The March For Science : NPR Ed : NPR

LA Johnson/NPR
April 21, 20175:41 AM ET

 

Eric Westervelt

Organizers of Saturday’s nationwide March for Science have some pretty lofty goals: supporting science “as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity.” Promoting “evidence-based policies in the public interest.” Oh, and don’t forget highlighting “the very real role that science plays in each of our lives and the need to respect and encourage research that gives us insight into the world.”

Whoa, that’s a lot of exalted ground to cover with one cardboard sign!

But long after those signs and slogans are put away, educators will continue the fun, hard slog of helping students understand key issues, like global warming, the science behind it and what students can do to help.

I reached out to three veteran experts on climate science education — Scott Denning, Frank Niepold and Rebecca Anderson — who’ll be working on the issue during and after this weekend’s marches. I wanted to hear more about their work and challenges, especially at a time when the head of the EPA has questioned the human role in global warming and President Trump has proposed slashing climate change funding and pulling back many environmental regulations.

…(read more).

#CuriousGoat: Submit A Question About World Hunger And Famine : Goats and Soda : NPR

Mohamed Abdiwahab/AFP/Getty Images

Somali children walk to a food distribution on the outskirts of Mogadishu on April 9.

April 21, 20173:51 PM ET  NPR Staff

What do you want to know about world hunger?

One thing we do know is that more than 20 million people are now at risk of starvation and famine. The United Nations is calling it the biggest humanitarian crisis since the U.N. was founded in 1945. Conflict and drought are blamed for the looming crisis in four countries in Africa and the Middle East: Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and northeast Nigeria.

Our blog has been covering the story. We’ve looked at who declares a famine and what that actually means. We’ve reported on a social media star’s “crazy idea” to help out. (Basically, persuade Turkish Airlines to lend a cargo plane and fill it with food.) And we’ve looked at what goes into a food drop from above.

As this crisis continues, we want to ask you: What do you want to know about world hunger and famine? Use the form below to submit your question.

…(read more).

Food-Matters

Theory of Peasant Economy: A.V. Chayanov

The work of A. V. Chayanov is today drawing more attention among Western scholars than ever before. Largely ignored in his native Russia because they differed from Marxist-Leninist theory, and neglected in the West for more than forty years, Chayanov s sophisticated theories were at last published in English in 1966.  That trenchant is reprinted in this Wisconsin paperback edition, which includes a new introduction by the sociologist Teodor Shanin, of the University of Manchester, one of the world s leading Chayanov scholars.

The Wisconsin edition will be essential reading for political scientists, anthropologists, and all whose interests include peasant studies, Third World development, and women s studies.

“The past two decades have seen the emergence of a whole new field called ‘peasant studies’ and, along with those of Karl Marx, Chayanov’s ideas have been central to its development. . . . The publishers are to be commended for re-issuing the book with both old and new introductions and making it available as an affordable paperback for students. The work is a classic.”

Times Higher Education Supplement

See related:

Exxon Asks for Treasury Dept. Waiver to Drill in Black Sea with Russian Oil Company


Apr 20, 2017

Oil giant ExxonMobil is pursuing a waiver in order to drill in the Black Sea as part of a joint venture with the Russian state oil company Rosneft. The waiver would allow Exxon to circumvent U.S. Treasury Department sanctions imposed on Russia over its annexation of Crimea. The State Department, headed by longtime ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, is one of the U.S. agencies that would have to approve the waiver—meaning the current CEO of Exxon will be asking an agency headed by the former CEO of Exxon for permission to drill. The State Department says Tillerson has recused himself from matters involving Exxon for two years. ExxonMobil claims it could lose its contract to drill in the Black Sea if it doesn’t begin operations by the end of this year.

Tens of Thousands to March for Science on Earth Day

Apr 21, 2017

And tens of thousands of scientists and their supporters will rally in Washington, D.C., and in other cities across the U.S. Saturday for a national “March for Science.” The rallies come as the Trump administration pursues an unprecedented campaign of science denial—on issues including climate change, vaccines and the environment. Ahead of the march, astrophysicist and science communicator Neil deGrasse Tyson released a video calling science denial a threat to democracy.

Neil deGrasse Tyson: “And so, science is a fundamental part of the country that we are. But in this, the 21st century, when it comes time to make decisions about science, it seems to me people have lost the ability to judge what is true and what is not; what is reliable, what is not reliable; what should you believe, what should you not believe. And when you have people who don’t know much about science standing in denial of it and rising to power, that is a recipe for the complete dismantling of our informed democracy.”

Democracy Now! will broadcast live from the March for Science in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Eastern time. You can go to democracynow.org to tune in to the broadcast.

Dow Lobbies White House to Reject Scientific Findings on Pesticides


Apr 21, 2017

Dow Chemical is asking the Trump administration to reject the findings of government scientists as they prepare a report on how pesticides known as organophosphates threaten human health and thousands of critically endangered species. Organophosphates were originally derived from a nerve agent developed in Nazi Germany. Peer-reviewed scientific studies have linked even small amounts of the chemicals to low birth weight and brain damage in children. Last month, Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt overturned a ban on one of the pesticides, produced by Dow Chemical, just before it was set to take effect. Dow Chemical paid $1 million to underwrite Donald Trump’s January inauguration, and Dow CEO Andrew Liveris was tapped by President Trump to head a White House manufacturing working group.

Kleptocracy?: How Ivanka Trump & Jared Kushner Personally Profit from Their Roles in the White House

Democracy Now!

Published on Apr 20, 2017

http://democracynow.org – Are Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner personally profiting from their official roles in the White House? According to the Associated Press, Ivanka Trump secured three new exclusive trademarks in China the very same day she and her father, President Trump, had dinner with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Trump’s private Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. The China trademarks give her company the exclusive rights to sell Ivanka-branded jewelry, bags and spa services in China. The New York Times reports Japan also approved new trademarks for Ivanka for branded shoes, handbags and clothing in February, and she has trademark applications pending in at least 10 other countries. Ivanka no longer manages her $50 million company, but she continues to own it. Ivanka also serves in the Trump administration as an adviser to the president. So does her husband, Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner. For more, we speak with
Vicky Ward, New York Times best-selling author, investigative journalist and contributor to Esquire and Huffington Post Highline magazine.