John James Newsletter No. <65>

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The John James Newsletter 65

20 June 2015 – Provence

Nations, like metal, shine only on the surface

Antoine de Riverol

Full text of Pope Francis on Climate Change

 US Catholics ready to follow Pope’s ‘marching orders’ on climate change 

We are in the business of creating a miracle on earth

An Inspiring talk that describes a new approach to money and capitalism

Iceland Jailed Bankers and Rejected Austerity—and It’s Been a Success

Instead of imposing devastating austerity measures and bailing out its banks, Iceland let its banks go bust and focused on social welfare policies. It has now repaid 85% of UK claims. When the global economic crisis hit in 2008, Iceland suffered terribly—perhaps more than any other country. The savings of 50,000 people were wiped out, plunging Icelanders into debt and placing 25% of homeowners in mortgage default. Now, less than a decade later, it will become the first European country that faced collapse to beat its pre-crisis peak of economic output. The IMF declared that Iceland had achieved economic recovery ‘without compromising its welfare model’ of universal healthcare and education. 

A Psychologist Explains Why People Don’t Give a Shit About Climate Change

The more people start believing we can create a better society with lower emissions, the sooner they can start taking action.  

To get a feel for what is going on

How to  turn young people into climate change activists 

France Removes Roundup from Store Shelves

Monsanto product will no longer be sold in aisles of nurseries frequented by amateur gardeners 

German companies have halted sales of Monsanto’s glyphosate herbicide. 

Arctic Sea Ice Area Drops 320,000 Square Kilometers in Just One Day

WikiLeaks: Big-Pharma Measures in TPP Will Raise Drug Prices

the TPP would steer member states towards pro-business, anti-consumer healthcare policies.It would crush the public health system of  New Zealand and Australia. It would restrain governments’ abilities to provide healthcare and medicine to citizens.

German Banker: Obama Is Destroying Europe

Because of sanctions against Russia, German exports declined by 18% in 2014, and by 34% in the first two months of 2015. The damage gets worse over time. For example, losing contract for the railway line from Moscow to Beijing.

South China Sea dispute updates

Planes downed, ships blocked, naval battles, and more, a list of eight incidents that have rattled the South China Sea region. 

Beefing up for war?

WikiLeaks cables reveal secret Nato plans to “defend” Baltics from Russia: 

China tests supersonic nuclear delivery vehicle 

China confirms test of new hypersonic strike vehicle ‘Wu-14’

Putin: 40+ ICBMs targeted for 2015 nuclear force boost

Pentagon ‘poised to send heavy weapons, troops to Eastern Europe’ 

Russia readies hybrid amphibious drone for test flight

Senior Iranian commander says Tehran ready for war with US

Russia will take part in multinational navy drills in disputed South China Sea

Skills become drudgery 

We know that our conditions of life are deteriorating. Interesting jobs are sliced up, through digital Taylorism, into portions of meaningless drudgery.

Writing’s On The Wall: Texas Pulls $1 Billion In Gold From NY Fed, Makes It “Non-Confiscatable”

The lack of faith in central bank trustworthiness is spreading. First Germany, then Holland, and Austria, and now Texas. 

As currency dies, Zimbabweans will get $5 for 175 quadrillion local dollars

Zimbabwean dollar was ruined by hyperinflation, when people had to carry bags of notes to buy bread and milk. Prices were rising at least twice a day. 

What Musical Taste Tells Us About Social Class

Class informs the way we listen to music. Poorer, less-educated people tended to like country, disco, easy listening, golden oldies, heavy metal and rap. The wealthier and better-educated preferred classical, blues, jazz, opera, choral, pop, reggae, rock, world and musical theatre. 

Thinking Like an Elephant

I believe the disappearance of our megafauna impoverishes human life as well as wildlife. We evolved in a wonderful, terrible world, of horns and tusks and fangs and claws, and we carry with us the vestigial psychological equipment – a ghost psyche – required to navigate it. 

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