Economy

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Memories of “Popular Power” in Venezuela’s Economy * From false co-management and cooperatives to the deceitful EPS, we present a balance of what has happened in Venezuela after at least 7 years of pretending to build a socialist economy, where the available data and verifiable facts belie the failure of the Chavez administration.
USA 2008: The Great Depression By David Usborne in New York, Independent.co.uk Food stamps are the symbol of poverty in the US. In the era of the credit crunch, a record 28 million Americans are now relying on them to survive – a sure sign the world's richest country faces economic crisis We knew things were bad on Wall Street, but on Main Street it may be worse. Startling official statistics show that as a new economic recession stalks the United States, a record number of Americans will shortly be depending on food stamps just to feed themselves and their
Is This the Big One? Jeff Faux, The Nation http://www.thenation.com/doc/20080414/faux [from the April 14, 2008 issue] For more than a decade, we Americans have been living on an economic San Andreas fault--a foundation of fracturing competitiveness covered by unsustainable consumer spending with money borrowed from foreigners. A financial earthquake was inevitable. We don't know how high on the recession Richter scale the current crisis will take us, but it increasingly looks like, as they say in San Francisco, "The Big One."
Join us Saturday, March 29th for Just Food's Annual CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) in NYC Conference! Come together with over 100 CSA members and regional farmers. Choose from a variety of informative and dynamic workshop topics. Share best-practices. Have your questions answered by our farmer panel. Network at our end-of-day CSA Expo and wine and cheese reception! This is your chance to find out how your farmer grows organically, discover ways to strengthen your existing core group, learn about New York's food system and more! When: Saturday, March 29th
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By Kunle Aderinokun This Day, Lagos, Nigeria via AllAfrica.com Wednesday, February 20, 2008 http://allafrica.com/stories/200802200406.html ABUJA, Nigeria -- A few days after President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua stopped the payment of their share of monthly allocations and excess crude proceeds in US dollars as earlier proposed by the Central Bank of Nigeria, the 36 states of the federation yesterday said they supported the decision because the dollar is not the nation's legal tender.
The American economy is in shambles, with a spiraling debt crisis, a vanishing industrial base, and a plummeting dollar. And, as the debacle of the occupation of Iraq continues to demonstrate, the US is finding it increasingly difficult to keep the rest of the world under its hegemonic thumb through military intervention. Giovanni Arrighi's new book, Adam Smith in Beijing, situates this global decline of US power within the context of a epochal shift in the world-system away from North American dominance and towards Asia. Is China the real winner of the "War on Terror"?

Leaving this Stage of History

Ramor Ryan


1. The Quiet Apocalypse of Rising Tides

Climate change is everywhere. A momentous report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) confirms that climate change is 'man-made and unstoppable'. The 21-page report, described as conservative by the IPCC itself, says human-made emissions of greenhouse gases are to blame for heat waves, floods and heavy rains, droughts and stronger storms, melting ice-caps and rising sea-levels.

The IPCC is comprised of over 2000 climate experts and scientists. It was set up in 1988 by the UN and the World Meteorological organisation to guide policy makers on the impact of climate change. Despite strenuous attempts by oil companies and big business to undermine the final report, it remains quietly apocalyptic in its assessment.

Its mind-boggling conclusion predicts serious water shortage for between 1.1 and 3.2 billion people, food shortages for 200 to 600 million people. Coastal flooding will hit seven million people within 70 years. The list of potential catastrophe goes on and on.

Manifestos for the Business School of Tomorrow

Fucking, weaving, boxing, masturbation and laziness. Did you ever wonder what is
happening in the university business school? According to the authors of Manifestos
for the Business School of Tomorrow
, recently published by Dvalin Press, there is a
revolution – or a whole series of revolutions – currently going on within Higher
Education. This is a most curious and perverse publication. According to the authors
of this study we should learn to embrace and celebrate these recent innovations in
the curriculum of business studies. Tony Blair is not going to be happy. You may
have thought that the business school was a sober and serious, industrious
institution – your children safely installed in classrooms learning all about strategic
planning, Net Present Value, the 5Ps of marketing, recruitment and selection or
Human Resource Management. But all is not what it seems. Students of business and
management studies today are actually learning all about desire and animality,
indifference and evil, vulgarity and masturbation. They are learning how to be queer
and jackass, how to self-abuse with horse tranquillizer, how to cultivate laziness. ‘It
is not as if this is anything new in terms of the business school’, writes Dr Campbell
Jones, one of the editors of this volume, ‘lecturers in business and management
studies have always taught a curriculum of insane irrelevance and utter stupidity’.
‘What is unique’, co-editor Dr Damian O’Doherty continues, ‘is that many have
suddenly woken up to this fact and have begun to make a virtue of this futility and
folly. Forget financial planning and personnel management. From boxing to
vulgarity this book might actually teach students how to survive in Blair’s Britain
and the world of military imperialism and global capital’.

The experience of reading this book is one that will almost certainly leave you
profoundly disturbed. You will undoubtedly be left feeling a little queasy and lightheaded.
As one reviewer wrote: ‘this book is dangerous and should be treated with
extreme caution. The editors and authors are deranged if not certifiable… but the
problem is, they might be right!’ If pre-sales interest is anything to go by this book is
likely to be a best seller. With only a limited print run of this volume planned by the
editors and publishers, e-bay is currently trading advance signed copies of the book
at offers over £500. In response to selling out of the first edition, the editors and
publisher have now released an electronic version that is free to download from
Dvalin Press
. As an antidote to corporate rhetoric and
government spin that ceaselessly intones about the importance of enterprise, hard
work, productivity and efficiency, this book is timely and critical, offering an
important series of essays and reflections on the state of the business school and
higher education in general. The Department of Education and Skills who advertise
their services with the Orwellian mantra ‘creating opportunity, realising potential
and achieving excellence’, have so far refused to comment on the implications of this
publication.

From the New Left Review:

What positive programme can the Left propose for a 'social Europe', against the Anglo-Saxon model? Robin Blackburn outlines first steps towards a new financial regime aimed at boosting resources for sustainable health and retirement provision, with a share levy on corporations, redistributed across the continent.

Capital and Social Europe

Robin Blackburn


The emphatic French and Dutch rejection of the proposed Constitution for the European Union creates an unstable situation in which, unless the European Left begins to define an alternative and rally support behind it, the neoliberal project will actually profit from votes that were, more than anything else, an expression of popular anger at the failure of the existing Euro-regime and its project of 'reform'. European monetary union has been accompanied by deregulation of financial markets, privatization of public assets and the cutting of social provision. At different times this is a programme that has been espoused by such varied sponsors as German Christian Democrats, German Social Democrats, German Greens, French Gaullists and Socialists, Italian former Communists and neo-conservatives, British New Labour and the Spanish Right. The project was flimsily disguised by attaching to it the phrase 'social Europe', but behind this was the drive to cut back collective provision and to commodify social protection.

James Lindenschmidt writes

radicalpolYtics.org is pleased to announce publication of a new eBook by George Caffentzis. No Blood For Oil! Energy, Class Struggle, and War, 1998-2004, a compilation of many of Caffentzis' writings over the past few years, is available in PDF format for download. The above link will get you the entire book; each chapter is also available individually."

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