Daily Archives: July 9, 2019

Global Warming of 1.5 ºC —


POV: Global Warming Is Now a National Security Concern | BU Today | Boston University


The Making of a ‘Banana Republic’…(without any bananas) | EV & N – 316 | CCTV




YouTube Version

Under its current leadership the United States is rapidly becoming a ‘banana republic’  — without any bananas.   Increasing signs of this transformation are apparent and pervasive.  The “free press” is a “free-market press,” and therefore substantially controlled by large corporations seeking favorable treatment from corrupted government agencies with the aim of building their respective market share and commercial dominance.  They no longer serve the citizen’s interests — vital in any democracy — to know and learn about the world around them so that they can make informed decisions determining their own future.  Instead the public is “sold” the news that serves the interests of dominant corporations and the advancement of political control by the corporate-state.

The courts have been stacked with judges who political appointees approved by a supine Senate beholden for the financing for their increasingly expensive public relations campaigns in periodic plebiscites.   No where else in the world are putatively “free elections” so expensive, effectively eliminating any candidates who cannot marshal millions upon millions of dollars to launch a “bid” for office.

The respect for “civil rights and “human rights” under the current administration has sunk to historically low levels, as international organizations have observed and the public daily witnesses the rise of overt racism and the construction of concentration camps for political refugees along its boarders.

The conduct of international relations has deteriorated to the level of the brazen disrespect for international law, the unilateral abrogation of treaties and the fitful use of bluster, intimidation and military-economic coercion for the advancement of selected corporate entities and military contractors that have proven faithful contributors to the dominant families in power.  Family members of the President have been placed in key government advisory and policy roles for which they are manifestly incompetent, leading many foreign Ambassadors to comment on the ineptness and shocking ignorance of the current American diplomats.

All of this has taken place with the sycophantic subservience of a scandalous “party system” and a notoriously  arcane and corrupted series of disjointed electoral procedures that have been infiltrated and manipulated by foreign powers who effectively succeed in promoting candidates of their own choosing.  In a “winner-takes-all” system this means foreign entities — either state actors or powerfully wealthy private interests have proved that they can effectively control the U.S. political system.

Perhaps most ominous feature of this unmitigated trend of moving to the status of a ‘banana republic’ is that it is a pattern that is being repeated around the world from Turkey to the Philippines and Egypt to Hungary.  This is particularly troubling because the U.S. has lost its stature of global respect as an effective voice for the moral high ground in human affairs or even as a credible mediator in conflicts that are multiplying around the world.

It is not clear as yet whether any other nation-state will fill this gap in global leadership or whether more nations will follow the U.S. path in its tragic collapse of vision and moral leadership.  For the moment the most positive reaction to these spiraling trends towards the proliferation of ‘banana republics’ around the world appears to be the global reaction of youth who are demonstrating, fighting for and demanding a just, equitable and survivable future for the global climate and all life-support systems around the world.



It remains to be seen whether collectively the youth can mobilize new forms of collective action and determination — like that demonstrated by the college-aged students in Hong Kong — to unite with one another to save the planet from those currently in dominant “leadership” positions in institutions and political systems around the world.

See related:




How to grow the food of the future

New China TV
Published on Jul 9, 2019

You’ve heard of fish tanks, and you’ve heard of gardens…but have you ever heard of putting those two things together?

Robert Reich: Three Economic Myths

Robert Reich

Published on Aug 10, 2015

Robert Reich explains 3 myths about the economy.

Trump Bizarrely Claims Green New Deal Will Harm Minorities And Poor People

The Ring of Fire

Published on Jul 9, 2019

On Monday, Donald Trump gave a speech about the environment, just moments after Washington, D.C. experienced one of the heaviest rainfalls on record. But rather than talk about leading the country forward, Trump derided progress by making absurd and completely false claims that plans like the Green New Deal would somehow harm minorities and poor people. Ring of Fire’s Farron Cousins explains why Trump’s claims have no basis in reality.

Food betrayal — don’t swallow the lies | Alan Lewis | TEDxBoulder

TEDx Talks

Published on Dec 1, 2014

This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. As an industry insider, Alan Lewis knows just how badly the food system is broken. In this high energy TEDx talk, Alan reveals the sophisticated methods used by the food industry “fibberati” to manipulate, deceive and distract us. If you have ever read a food label and felt you were being lied to, you have felt the “dark mark” of the fibberati. We can resist these nefarious tactics by making conscious food choices based on core values that support a sustainable and just food system.

Alan directs Government Affairs and Food and Agriculture Policy for Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage, a 60-year-old health food chain operating over 85 stores in fifteen states. He is active in many trade organizations and sits on the Boulder County Food and Agriculture Policy Council. His focus is on communicating with local and federal policy makers using frameworks that are non-confrontational and inclusive — except for tonight. He has lived for extended periods in Portugal, Haiti, and Dominica, where he developed a keen appreciation for the variables of agriculture production and food systems within different geographic, cultural and economic contexts.


Why Asia is the center of the world (again) | Parag Khanna | TEDxGateway

TEDx Talks

Published on Jan 25, 2019

Asians don’t think of themselves as Asian, but as the new Silk Roads re-emerge and propel Asia to the center of the world economy, Asians are rediscovering their greatness and forging a new Asian identity for the 21st century. Parag Khanna was born in India grew up in the UAE, USA, and Germany, and in recent years has lived in London and Singapore. He is an adventure traveler, scholar, and bestselling author of six books including The Second World, Connectography, and The Future is Asian. Parag is the founder and managing partner of FutureMap, a strategic advisory firm. He has appeared in major television and print media around the world, and has spoken at TED Global 2009, TED 2016, TEDxGateway, and other TED events.

China’s rise: The three key things everyone needs to know | Kerry Brown | TEDxThessaloniki

TEDx Talks

Published on Jun 26, 2019
There is more to China than it’s current prominence in global affairs. In this enlightening talk, Kerry Brown reflects on China’s rise and invites us to question our understanding of the country, its people and its values. How did China transform within a few decades to the global powerhouse it is today and what does a future with China in the steering wheel hold for the rest of the world?

Η άνοδος της Κίνας: Τα τρία πράγματα που πρέπει να ξέρουν όλοι

Η Κίνα έχει σήμερα κυρίαρχη θέση στην παγκόσμια γεωπολιτική σκακιέρα. Σ’αυτήν τη διαφωτιστική ομιλία, ο Kerry Brown αναφέρεται στην άνοδο της Κίνας και μας καλεί να εντρυφήσουμε στη χώρα, την ιστορία και τους ανθρώπους της. Πώς μεταμορφώθηκε η Κίνα στην υπερδύναμη που βλέπουμε σήμερα και τι σημαίνει για όλους μας ένα μέλλον με την Κίνα στο τιμόνι της ανθρωπότητας;

Music by audionautix.com

Kerry Brown is Professor of Chinese Studies and Director of the Lau China Institute at King’s College, London. He is an Associate of the Asia Pacific Programme at Chatham House, London.
From 2012 to 2015, he was Professor of Chinese Politics and Director of the China Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, Australia. From 2006 to 2012, he worked at Chatham House as Senior Fellow and then Head of the Asia Programme. From 1998 to 2005, he worked at the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, as First Secretary at the British Embassy in Beijing, and then as Head of the Indonesia, Philippines and East Timor Section. He lived in the Inner Mongolia region of China from 1994 to 1996. He holds an MA from Cambridge, and a PhD in Chinese politics and language from Leeds University.
Professor Brown has directed the Europe China Research and Advice Network. He is the author of almost 20 books on modern Chinese politics, history and language. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at https://www.ted.com/tedx

My Seditious Heart: Collected Nonfiction: Arundhati Roy

Twenty years, a thousand pages, and now a single beautiful edition of Arundhati Roy’s complete nonfiction.

Bookended by her two extraordinary novels, The God of Small Things (1997) and The Ministry of Utmost Happiness (2017), My Seditious Heart collects the work of a two-decade period when Arundhati Roy devoted herself to the political essay as a way of opening up space for justice, rights, and freedoms in an increasingly hostile environment.

Radical and superbly readable, the essays speak in a voice of unique spirit, marked by compassion, clarity, and courage. Roy offers a powerful defense of the collective, of the individual, and of the land, in the face of the destructive logic of financial, social, religious, military, and governmental elites.

In constant conversation with the themes and settings of her novels, the essays form a near-unbroken memoir of Arundhati Roy’s journey as both a writer and a citizen, of both India and the world, from “The End of Imagination,” which begins this book, to “My Seditious Heart,” with which it ends.

Arundhati Roy studied architecture in New Delhi, where she now lives. She is the author of the novels The God of Small Things, for which she received the 1997 Booker Prize, and The Ministry of Utmost Happiness.