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Daily Digest 10/8 - German Recession Fears Grow, China Economy To Continue Slowdown

Chris Martenson - October 8, 2014 - 06:44
  • Retirees go to court against city for health care
  • Pennsylvania: Health Costs Imposed on Teachers
  • L.A.-area restaurants adding healthcare surcharge to cover workers
  • Wal-Mart to End Health Insurance for Some Part-Time Employees
  • French finance minister says not in EU's powers to reject budget
  • German recession fears grow with latest industry data
  • Japanese data suggest recession may be near
  • China economy to continue slowdown into ’16 – World Bank
  • IMF says economic growth may never return to pre-crisis levels
  • Dutch Central Bank Warns ECB Over Policy Risks

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Categories: Economics

How to Control Deer Damage on Fruit and Nut Trees

Chris Martenson - October 8, 2014 - 05:42

If you are planning a food forest, an orchard, or just a few fruit trees, it is a good idea to observe your site for evidence of deer. My wife & I live in a semi-rural area just outside of a small town. We have farms and single family homes around us. I really didn’t think much about the deer when I originally planted (50) fruit and nut trees out in my pasture. I knew they could be a problem, but I thought with the busy road and my neighbors around me, they would not be interested. I couldn’t have been more wrong about that!

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Categories: Economics

The Schizophrenia Tormenting Our Society & Economy

Chris Martenson - October 7, 2014 - 18:51

What can popular television programs tell us about the zeitgeist (spirit of the age) of our culture and economy? 

It’s an interesting question, as all mass media both responds to and shapes our interpretations and explanations of changing times. It’s also an important question, as mass media trends crystallize and express new ways of understanding our era.

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Categories: Economics

Desperately Seeking Substance

Chris Martenson - October 7, 2014 - 18:50
Executive Summary
  • As we increasingly revere the superficial, we increase our subconscious craving for substance
  • What the success of Breaking Bad tells us about our confidence in meritocracy
  • The hopelessness of achieving the sold "American Dream" has created a cultural social depression
  • Healthy, authentic social mores will be found in our own making of them, not the idiot box

If you have not yet read The Schizophrenia Tormenting Our Society & Economy available free to all readers, please click here to read it first.

In Part 1, we set the stage for an analysis of American TV as a reflection of the cultural schizophrenia created by a widening gap between the few at the top of the celebrity/wealth pyramid and everyone else. TV’s winner-take-all competitions reflect the normalization of our acceptance of a society that produces few winners and an abundance of losers, and of the partial redemption offered by temporary recognition or social-media popularity.

On the surface, such shows reflect our culture’s belief in merit as the arbiter of success: the “best” competitor wins fair and square.  But beneath this superficial elevation of meritocracy are a variety of questions about the critical role of judges (experts) and the rewards of recognition, however fleeting: if the public spotlight is inaccessible, attracting a large number of “likes” for “selfies” photos offers a consolation form of popularity.

That such adulation of celebrity and the gaze of others trigger the loss of an authentic self is never mentioned; asking why draws a blank, as that interpretation of celebrity simply doesn’t exist on the cultural stage.

Let’s continue our exploration of TV’s subtexts by examining the ground-breaking series, Breaking Bad.

The Many Subtexts of Breaking Bad

Let me start by stipulating I am no expert on the series Breaking Bad, or indeed, on any TV series; I am commenting not on the plots or characters per se but on the series’ subtexts.

Many have noted the implausibility of a schoolteacher in America not having health insurance (and also not qualifying for Medicaid), not to mention the premise (that a schoolteacher starts manufacturing one of the most destructive and addictive drugs on the planet, crystal meth, to pay for his cancer treatments).

James Howard Kunstler recently took note of...

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Categories: Economics

What to do for Winter in the Garden

Chris Martenson - October 7, 2014 - 15:47

If you have a garden, it is time to start getting it ready for colder weather and the long dark days of winter.  Here are 4 things you should be doing now to get your garden ready for winter and the coming Spring. 

http://www.resilientcommunities.com/what-to-do-for-winter/

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Categories: Economics

Join the Global #MapJam to Organize the New Economy in Your City

Shareable Magazine - October 7, 2014 - 12:21

Starting next Monday, October 13th and continuing through the end of the month, groups are coming together all over the world in pursuit of a shared goal. We want to map every city to make visible the economic transformation that’s already happening, connect it and organize for collective power.

Categories: Economics

10 Realities After a Major Flooding Event

Chris Martenson - October 7, 2014 - 10:48

Some great tips and knowledge for setting realistic expectations of what life will be like after a major flood or hurricane. 

http://thesurvivalmom.com/l10-realities-major-flooding-event/

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Categories: Economics

Daily Digest 10/7 - Spain Seeks to Prevent Spread of Ebola, 50 Years Of Bullet Trains In Japan

Chris Martenson - October 7, 2014 - 07:36
  • SRC cancels teachers' contract
  • At 78, Former Executive Still Flips Burgers for $7.98 an Hour
  • India dengue fever cases 300 times higher than officially reported - study
  • After Its First Ebola Case, Spain Seeks to Prevent Spread of Virus
  • After Death of New Jersey Boy From Enterovirus 68, Worry Grows Among Parents
  • What 50 Years of Bullet Trains Have Done for Japan
  • The Latest Hybrid: A Solar Cell That’s Also A Battery
  • New Experimental GE Wheat Contamination in Montana Puts Wheat Farmers at Risk

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Categories: Economics

The Global Slowdown

Chris Martenson - October 6, 2014 - 17:46

I am on record as saying that the end of the US Fed money printing (a.k.a 'QE') is a bigger deal than the equity markets of the west and Japan have factored in.

Further, I don't think that the ECB has sufficiently picked up the baton from the US Fed and I seriously doubt that they will be able to expand their money printing efforts much beyond that already announced due to pressure from a reluctant Germany.

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Categories: Economics

The Top 10 TED Talks about Cities

Shareable Magazine - October 6, 2014 - 09:35

Photo credit: TED.

1. Amanda Burden: How Public Spaces Make Cities Work

Categories: Economics

How to Celebrate #RideSharingDay

Shareable Magazine - October 6, 2014 - 07:33

Ridesharing, in its many forms, is a fun and practical aspect of the sharing economy. It's a way to reduce your carbon footprint, meet like-minded people, save money, and support new and innovative ways of getting around. It's a great way to enter the sharing lifestyle.

International #RideSharingDay is a celebration of all things ridesharing. Celebrated around the world on October 10th, the event, now in its seventh year, serves as a reminder of the importance of rethinking our methods of transportation.

Categories: Economics

Daily Digest 10/6 - The Third Industrial Revolution, The Most Ambitious Environmental Lawsuit Ever

Chris Martenson - October 6, 2014 - 07:26
  • Consumerism Is Past Its Sell-By Date
  • Inside the Koch Brothers' Toxic Empire
  • The Third Industrial Revolution
  • Key Events In The Spread Of Ebola
  • Madrid Moves Toward a Car-Free Center City
  • The 10 Worst Energy-Related Disasters Of Modern Times
  • The Most Ambitious Environmental Lawsuit Ever
  • The Sand Thieves: World's Beaches Become Victims of Construction Boom

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Categories: Economics

How to Apply Plaza Principles to Transit Hubs

Shareable Magazine - October 6, 2014 - 07:20

Top image: A bland transit hub in LA. It doesn't have to be this way. Credit: Frederick Dennstedt

Categories: Economics

Off the Cuff: Financial Repression

Chris Martenson - October 4, 2014 - 12:43

In this week's Off the Cuff podcast, Chris and Brian Pretti discuss:

  • Financial Repression
    • Central banks have 'cornered the market' for global capital
  • Reason Behind The Dollar's Rise
    • The smart money is getting out of riskier assets
  • Global Flows of Capital
    • The Fed hands the money-printing baton to the EU & China
  • Intergenerational Friction
    • Likely one of the defining issues of the future

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Categories: Economics

Daily Digest 10/4 - Solving The Wage Growth Puzzle, Ocean Health Gets "D" Grade

Chris Martenson - October 4, 2014 - 09:00
  • Jobs Report Highlights the Wage Growth Puzzle
  • Can Seattle Afford to Pay a Premium Minimum Wage?
  • Ebola Crisis Brings an Abundance of Caution Into a Dallas Community
  • Last German state to do away with university tuition fees
  • Why are wind farms killing so many bats?
  • Here's Why We Haven't Quite Figured Out How to Feed Billions More People
  • Ocean Health Gets "D" Grade in New Global Report Card
  • US reroutes flights around Alaska beach in attempt to avoid walrus stampede

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Categories: Economics

A National Failure to Save & Invest - Crash Course Chapter 16

Chris Martenson - October 3, 2014 - 16:08

As detailed in earlier chapters, the US' debts and unfunded liabilities far exceed its assets. But making matters worse, the country is suffering from a prolonged failure to save and invest -- both at the personal and national level.

Being over-indebted and under-capitalized is a recipe for hardship as we move into the future, especially if economic growth is going to be harder to come by (which we forecast in the upcoming chapters on net energy). Each year we continue this deficit makes us less able to withstand systemic shocks (a 2008-style financial crisis, an energy shock, the outbreak of war), some number of which lie undoubtedly ahead at some point.

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Categories: Economics

Building Your Own Faraday Cage

Chris Martenson - October 3, 2014 - 12:58

A Faraday cage is an enclosed space with an outer layer that conducts electricity. The physical shape of the Faraday cage does not matter: it can be spherical, cylindrical, or a box. Either the cage itself can be made of a conductive material, or the cage can be built of a non-conductive material such as wood and then covered in a conductive material.

The conductive material can be as simple as several layers of aluminum foil, which makes constructing your own Faraday cage a fairly simple and inexpensive affair.

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Categories: Economics

Daily Digest 10/3 - Colonization by Bankruptcy, Central Banks Expand Stimulus

Chris Martenson - October 3, 2014 - 05:34
  • As Fed Retreats From Stimulus, Central Banks Overseas Expand Theirs
  • Colonization by Bankruptcy: The High-stakes Chess Match for Argentina
  • Ebola-infected passenger was sent home from ER
  • A Hospital From Hell, in a City Swamped by Ebola
  • Marc Faber on Global Stocks, Gold, Investment Strategy
  • Uncharted Territory For A System In Overshoot
  • Heat- and booze-tolerant yeast make more biofuels
  • Drowning Farms

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Categories: Economics

20 Paper Clip Hacks for Survival & Everyday Uses

Chris Martenson - October 2, 2014 - 14:48

A bunch of great ideas and uses for paper clips. Time to pick up this inexpensive prep if you don't have a box handy.


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Categories: Economics

Freelancers Union to Expand Health Centers Nationally

Shareable Magazine - October 2, 2014 - 08:57

In late June, Freelancers Union unveiled a national benefits platform to help independent American workers gain access to affordable insurance for health care, disability, term life, dental, liability, and retirement.

Categories: Economics