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    Daily Digest 2/11 – Wealth Concentration Near ‘Roaring 20s’ Levels, Insect Decline Risks Catastrophic Ecosystem Collapse

    by DailyDigest

    Monday, February 11, 2019, 9:26 AM

Economy

Wealth concentration near ‘levels last seen during the Roaring Twenties,’ study finds (Adam)

Zucman, who advised Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., on a recent proposal to tax high levels of wealth, warns that these numbers may actually understate the amount of wealth concentrated in the hands of the rich: It has become more difficult to account for the true wealth of the ultra-rich in recent decades, in part because many hide their assets in offshore tax shelters.

Russian-Style Kleptocracy Is Infiltrating America (tmn)

The collapse of communism in the other post-Soviet states, along with China’s turn toward capitalism, only added to the kleptocratic fortunes that were hustled abroad for secret safekeeping. Officials around the world have always looted their countries’ coffers and accumulated bribes. But the globalization of banking made the export of their ill-gotten money far more convenient than it had been—which, of course, inspired more theft. By one estimate, more than $1 trillion now exits the world’s developing countries each year in the forms of laundered money and evaded taxes.

Neoliberalism: An idea swallowing the world (Afridev)

In the aftermath of Davos, we’ve learnt that that gathering is a busted flush. Not least, because billionaires don’t ever bite the hand that feeds them. This hand is an economic ideology called ‘neoliberalism’ – and it has created a tiny proportion of people who now own most of the world’s wealth. So what has forty years of neoliberal economics done to us and our political landscape? Host Ross Ashcroft is joined by the economists Mary Wrenn and Frances Coppola to delve into this pernicious economic idea that is responsible for almost all the chaos we see around the world.

The TSA and Security Theater: Understanding American Airport Security Following 9/11 (Tom P.)

Sadly, the TSA’s accumulated procedures and screening practices are actually causing more American deaths. Cornell University researchers found decreased air travel after 9/11 led to an extra 242 road fatalities per month. In all, the researchers estimate that 1,200 people died as a result of decreased air travel. In 2007, the Cornell researchers studied TSA screening procedures implemented in 2002, and found that they decreased air travel by 6% – leading to an additional 129 road fatalities in the last three months of 2002. In terms of casualties, that’s the same as blowing up a fully loaded Boeing 737.

Kentucky sheriff suspends all law enforcement over lack of funding (thc0655)

In Knott County, the fiscal court approved a partial shutdown of county government last month. That allows the county’s road department to respond only to emergencies. The fiscal court also canceled health insurance for all county employees and elected officials. And Judge-Executive Jeff Dobson said they will also make cuts to a program that delivers food to senior citizens.

If San Francisco is so great, why is everyone I love leaving? (tmn)

To be clear, she loved her town and its bearing in the coastal California fantasy. She wanted to share it, brag about it, celebrate it. But selling bourgeoise yogurt crocks and $100 bottles of wine to people who didn’t see her as part of their shabby-chic fantasy was becoming difficult to bear. She was also onboarding other displaced “village kids” who were doing exactly what she was doing: moving back home, into their parents’ offices, in-law units, and backyards. Having only kind words and a dead-end service job to offer them was making her grow thorns.

U.K. Doctors Call for Caution in Children’s Use of Screens and Social Media (jdargis)

The medical officers declined to set age and time limits, saying that there was not enough evidence to do so. The American Association of Pediatrics gave more specific guidelines in 2016, urging parents to keep infants under 18 months away from screens and to restrict the time young children spend using media.

Earth system impacts of the European arrival and Great Dying in the Americas after 1492 (thc0655)

Human impacts prior to the Industrial Revolution are not well constrained. We investigate whether the decline in global atmospheric CO2 concentration by 7–10 ppm in the late 1500s and early 1600s which globally lowered surface air temperatures by 0.15∘C, were generated by natural forcing or were a result of the large-scale depopulation of the Americas after European arrival, subsequent land use change and secondary succession.

Insects Are Dying En Masse, Risking ‘Catastrophic’ Collapse Of Earth’s Ecosystems (Don R.)

“It is very rapid. In 10 years you will have a quarter less, in 50 years only half left and in 100 years you will have none,” study co-author Francisco Sánchez-Bayo, an environmental biologist at the University of Sydney, Australia, told The Guardian.

“If insect species losses cannot be halted, this will have catastrophic consequences for both the planet’s ecosystems and for the survival of mankind,” Sánchez-Bayo added.

Oregon has more legal cannabis than the state can consume in six years (tmn)

“For Oregon, producing a lot of marijuana is not new news; producing a lot of marijuana that is tracked in the legal system is,” writes Steve Marks, the commission’s executive director. He notes that the state has garnered $198 million in tax revenue from the first three years of its legal cannabis regime, and that only 45% of estimated Oregon cannabis use is supplied by the medical marijuana market, legal home grows, or the black market.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 2/8/19

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the “3 Es.”

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4 Comments

  • Mon, Feb 11, 2019 - 9:54am

    #1

    newsbuoy

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 10 2013

    Posts: 134

    Easy to be a Bad Guy, Easier for POTUS

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 6:31am

    #2
    brushhog

    brushhog

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 06 2015

    Posts: 53

    Natural world expanding, not decreasing

    Just to put things in perspective, we read alot about “collapsing eco-systems” here and always what is decreasing. But to have a more accurate, realistic view of the world, we have to consider also what is INCREASING;
    1. There are more forest acres in America than there were 100 years ago. Thats right. Not only is there MORE forest land than in 1920, theres ALOT more…380% more;
    https://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/wilderness-resources/stories/more-tree
    2. The deer populations have expanded massively;
    “In 1930 the US white-tailed deer population was down to about 300,000. Today, estimates of how many there are range as high as about 30 million. That’s a 1,000-fold increase in less than 100 years”
    3. Wild Turkey populations have increased nearly 5 fold;
    “When the National Wild Turkey Federation was founded in 1973, there were approximately 1.5 million wild turkeys in North America. After 40 years of effort, that number has reached a historic high ofabout 6.7 million turkeys. ”
    4. These animals have all been taken off of the endangered species list. Some are being watched, but others have seen number explode;
     

    Alligators, Whooping Cranes, Bald Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, Wolves, Grizzly Bears, And California Condors
     

     
    What we have is a planet in flux. This is the nature of nature. Species are decreasing while others are increasing. Often they reverse for reasons that human beings do not comprehend. If we constantly harp on what is declining, and ignore what is increasing, we get a very warped view of reality.

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 7:39am

    #3

    jeantheau

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 01 2009

    Posts: 10

    those are not healthy, normal ecosystems

    The “more forests today” thing is a canard. What we have is more MANAGED forests — read “tree farms” — and much, much less original forest land with original ecosystems. Any biologist worth his salt will tell you that tree-farm forests are not comparable ecosystems.
    Similarly, deer and wild turkeys are doing fine because the are less hampered by degraded forest systems and the (human-installed) fences that surround/separate them. There are also now many fewer species that prey upon deer and turkeys, since humans have exterminated most of the top-line predators for being a threat to farm animals (which we have LOTS of now).
    The species that came off the endangered list did so only because there were protected and allowed to reestablish. Their numbers, ranges, and habitats are still nothing like they once were. Still, I’ll take the win.
    I get your point, and to some extent I agree: Humans are driving a massive ecosystem change, possibly with disastrous consequences, possibly not. If you believe that we humans are all part of a larger eternal system based on consciousness/spirituality, then it’s a fascinating experiment to watch unfold. But let’s not be tricksy when evaluating the impact humans are having on other species.
    Mark

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 11:56am

    #4

    AKGrannyWGrit

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2011

    Posts: 464

    Turkey Talk

    Brush hog – 
    1. There are more forest acres in America than there were 100 years ago. Thats right. Not only is there MORE forest land than in 1920, theres ALOT more…380% more;
    https://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/wilderness-resources/stories/more-tree
    Sooo the message is – don’t worry be happy – but really – who funds The Food and Agricultural Organization? Uh-huh – follow the money.
    “What we have is a planet in flux. This is the nature of nature. Species are decreasing while others are increasing. Often they reverse for reasons that human beings do not comprehend. If we constantly harp on what is declining, and ignore what is increasing, we get a very warped view of reality.”
    Yeah who needs all those extinct birds, bees, bugs and animals anyway!!!!   Whew and I thought we should worry about our environment but all we need to do us change our perspective!  Back to watching the Grammys and obsessing over trivial shit.  
    Incomprehensible
    cranky Granny

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