Today, around 21,000 children died around the world. This daily tragedy, from poverty and other preventable causes, rarely makes headline news.

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World

  1. Agribusiness Is the Problem, Not the Solution

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, Feb 19 (IPS) - For two centuries, all too many discussions about hunger and resource scarcity has been haunted by the ghost of Parson Thomas Malthus. Malthus warned that rising populations would exhaust resources, especially those needed for food production. Exponential population growth would outstrip food output.

  2. In the World of Sustainability, Colonialism is Not Dead

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    SINGAPORE, Feb 19 (IPS) - Zafirah Zein is a correspondent for Eco-Business*, a sustainability media organisation covering responsible business and sustainable development in Asia Pacific. Scandinavian fashion label and global It-brand Ganni hardly caused a stir recently when it closed Copenhagen Fashion Week with a sustainability-themed showcase titled "Life on Earth."

  3. Sexual Violence Surging in South Sudan

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Feb 19 (IPS) - Women and girls continue to face the brunt of violence in the northern region of South Sudan with persistently high and brutal levels of sexual violence, a new report found.

  4. Mining Grabs Up Land, Deals Blow to Agriculture in Central America

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    SAN SALVADOR, Feb 19 (IPS) - Like an octopus, metals mining has been spreading its tentacles throughout Central America and dealing a blow to the region's agriculture and natural ecosystems, according to affected villagers, activists and a new report on the problem.

  5. The Challenges & Opportunities Facing South-South Cooperation

    Monday, February 18, 2019

    GENEVA, Feb 18 (IPS) - Branislav Gosovic worked in UNCTAD, UNEP, UNECLAC, World Commission on Environment and Development, South Commission, and South Centre (1991-2005), and is the author of the recently-published book ‘The South Shaping the Global Future, 6 Decades of the South-North Development Struggle in the UN.'The BAPA+40 Zero Draft Outcome Document—to be adopted at the upcoming conference on the Buenos Aires Plan of Action (BAPA+40) in Argentina March 20-22-- is much like a conference report intended to accommodate different points of view.

  6. <em>Roma</em> the Movie: The Hidden Drama of Domestic Workers

    Monday, February 18, 2019

    STOCKHOLM / ROME, Feb 18 (IPS) - Romaa 2018 Mexican film written and directed by Alfonso Cuarón, is currently on a triumphal journey through the world. It won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festivalthe best director and best foreign language film at the Golden Globe Awardsbest director and best picture at the Critics´ Choice Awardsbest film, best direction and best cinematography at the British Academy Film Awards. Furthermore, Roma has a record high ten nominations for the upcoming Academy Awards (The Oscars). Not at all bad for a black-and-white movie, which appears to have been directed by a sophisticated cineaste and custom-made for an art-house audience. Moreover, Roma deals with a highly controversial and seldom treated theme – the plight of poor, women domestic workers.

  7. Q&A: Jamaica Pushes Climate Smart Policies to Secure the Future of its Food Supply

    Monday, February 18, 2019

    BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe, Feb 18 (IPS) - The island state of Jamaica is vulnerable to climate change which has in turn threatened both its economy and food production. But the Caribbean nation is taking the threat seriously and it has constructed a robust policy framework to support national climate action, particularly when it comes to promoting climate-smart agriculture (CSA).

  8. Kenya’s Marginalised Say Nothing For Us, Without Us

    Monday, February 18, 2019

    MAKUENI, Kenya, Feb 18 (IPS) - Julia Mutua is a resident of Kalawa ward in the semi-arid Makueni County in Eastern Kenya and a member of a women's farmers group that runs a poultry project.

  9. Dismantling Sexual Health Stigma in India

    Friday, February 15, 2019

    NEW DELHI, Feb 15 (IPS) - Natasha Chaudhary* is a trainer, coach and strategy consultant working to strengthen people-powered work. She is a Director at Haiyya, an Indian youth led feminist non-profit organization specializing in grassroots campaigning and consulting.

    Results from a survey with young and unmarried women suggest that as low as 1% of women have received information on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) from their mothers, doctors or government campaigns.

    And 53% of these women feel unsure if the sexual health problems they faced were severe enough to visit a gynaecologist. Within the Indian context and patriarchal system, any conversation around young women's sexuality is limited and stigmatised.

  10. Q&A: Suriname’s President Champions Preserving the World’s Forests

    Friday, February 15, 2019

    PARAMARIBO, Feb 15 (IPS) - IPS Correspondent Desmond Brown interviews DESIRE DELANO BOUTERSE, president of Suriname.

    At the Bonn Climate Conference in 2017, Suriname announced its aspirations to maintain its forest coverage at 93 percent of the land area.

    For Suriname and other High Forest Cover and Low Deforestation (HFLD) nations, maintaining forest coverage is their contribution to saving the planet from the effects of climate change, something they did not cause.

  11. More stories…

Economy

  1. Agribusiness Is the Problem, Not the Solution

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, Feb 19 (IPS) - For two centuries, all too many discussions about hunger and resource scarcity has been haunted by the ghost of Parson Thomas Malthus. Malthus warned that rising populations would exhaust resources, especially those needed for food production. Exponential population growth would outstrip food output.

  2. Mining Grabs Up Land, Deals Blow to Agriculture in Central America

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    SAN SALVADOR, Feb 19 (IPS) - Like an octopus, metals mining has been spreading its tentacles throughout Central America and dealing a blow to the region's agriculture and natural ecosystems, according to affected villagers, activists and a new report on the problem.

  3. The Challenges & Opportunities Facing South-South Cooperation

    Monday, February 18, 2019

    GENEVA, Feb 18 (IPS) - Branislav Gosovic worked in UNCTAD, UNEP, UNECLAC, World Commission on Environment and Development, South Commission, and South Centre (1991-2005), and is the author of the recently-published book ‘The South Shaping the Global Future, 6 Decades of the South-North Development Struggle in the UN.'The BAPA+40 Zero Draft Outcome Document—to be adopted at the upcoming conference on the Buenos Aires Plan of Action (BAPA+40) in Argentina March 20-22-- is much like a conference report intended to accommodate different points of view.

  4. Q&A: Jamaica Pushes Climate Smart Policies to Secure the Future of its Food Supply

    Monday, February 18, 2019

    BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe, Feb 18 (IPS) - The island state of Jamaica is vulnerable to climate change which has in turn threatened both its economy and food production. But the Caribbean nation is taking the threat seriously and it has constructed a robust policy framework to support national climate action, particularly when it comes to promoting climate-smart agriculture (CSA).

  5. Q&A: Suriname’s President Champions Preserving the World’s Forests

    Friday, February 15, 2019

    PARAMARIBO, Feb 15 (IPS) - IPS Correspondent Desmond Brown interviews DESIRE DELANO BOUTERSE, president of Suriname.

    At the Bonn Climate Conference in 2017, Suriname announced its aspirations to maintain its forest coverage at 93 percent of the land area.

    For Suriname and other High Forest Cover and Low Deforestation (HFLD) nations, maintaining forest coverage is their contribution to saving the planet from the effects of climate change, something they did not cause.

  6. Bringing #MeToo to the Fashion Industry

    Friday, February 15, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Feb 15 (IPS) - The global #MeToo movement has put a spotlight on sexual harassment and violence in various industries including the film and music industries. Is it now time for the fashion industry to address these issues within their supply chains, one organisation says.

  7. Q&A: What of the Carbon Neutral Countries?

    Thursday, February 14, 2019

    PARAMARIBO, Feb 14 (IPS) - IPS Correspondent Desmond Brown interviews DR. ARMSTRONG ALEXIS, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) resident representative for Suriname.

    As High Forest Cover and Low Deforestation (HFLD) nations meet in Suriname at a major conference, it is obvious that the decision made by these countries to preserve their forests has been a difficult but good one.

  8. Q&A: We Are Helping the World Mitigate Climate Change, Now it’s Time to Help Us

    Wednesday, February 13, 2019

    The Caribbean nation of Suriname may be one of the most forested countries in the world, with some 93 percent of the country's surface area being covered in forests, but it is also the most threatened as it struggles with the impacts of climate change.

  9. Our Forests Provide the World With Oxygen But we Need More Climate Change Finance - HFLD Countries

    Wednesday, February 13, 2019

    PARAMARIBO, Feb 13 (IPS) - Suriname, the most forested country in the world, is this week hosting a major international conference on climate financing for High Forest Cover and Low Deforestation (HFLD) countries.

  10. Economic Crisis Can Trigger World War

    Tuesday, February 12, 2019

    KUALA LUMPUR and BERLIN, Feb 12 (IPS) - Economic recovery efforts since the 2008-2009 global financial crisis have mainly depended on unconventional monetary policies. As fears rise of yet another international financial crisis, there are growing concerns about the increased possibility of large-scale military conflict.

  11. More stories…

Climate

  1. Agribusiness Is the Problem, Not the Solution

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, Feb 19 (IPS) - For two centuries, all too many discussions about hunger and resource scarcity has been haunted by the ghost of Parson Thomas Malthus. Malthus warned that rising populations would exhaust resources, especially those needed for food production. Exponential population growth would outstrip food output.

  2. In the World of Sustainability, Colonialism is Not Dead

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    SINGAPORE, Feb 19 (IPS) - Zafirah Zein is a correspondent for Eco-Business*, a sustainability media organisation covering responsible business and sustainable development in Asia Pacific. Scandinavian fashion label and global It-brand Ganni hardly caused a stir recently when it closed Copenhagen Fashion Week with a sustainability-themed showcase titled "Life on Earth."

  3. Mining Grabs Up Land, Deals Blow to Agriculture in Central America

    Tuesday, February 19, 2019

    SAN SALVADOR, Feb 19 (IPS) - Like an octopus, metals mining has been spreading its tentacles throughout Central America and dealing a blow to the region's agriculture and natural ecosystems, according to affected villagers, activists and a new report on the problem.

  4. Q&A: Jamaica Pushes Climate Smart Policies to Secure the Future of its Food Supply

    Monday, February 18, 2019

    BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe, Feb 18 (IPS) - The island state of Jamaica is vulnerable to climate change which has in turn threatened both its economy and food production. But the Caribbean nation is taking the threat seriously and it has constructed a robust policy framework to support national climate action, particularly when it comes to promoting climate-smart agriculture (CSA).

  5. Q&A: Suriname’s President Champions Preserving the World’s Forests

    Friday, February 15, 2019

    PARAMARIBO, Feb 15 (IPS) - IPS Correspondent Desmond Brown interviews DESIRE DELANO BOUTERSE, president of Suriname.

    At the Bonn Climate Conference in 2017, Suriname announced its aspirations to maintain its forest coverage at 93 percent of the land area.

    For Suriname and other High Forest Cover and Low Deforestation (HFLD) nations, maintaining forest coverage is their contribution to saving the planet from the effects of climate change, something they did not cause.

  6. ‘Today, We Declare Our Love to Our Forests and Ecosystems’

    Friday, February 15, 2019

    PARAMARIBO, Feb 15 (IPS) - High Forest Cover and Low Deforestation (HFLD) nations ended a major conference in Suriname on Thursday, with the Krutu of Paramaribo Joint Declaration on HFLD Climate Finance Mobilisation.

  7. Q&A: What of the Carbon Neutral Countries?

    Thursday, February 14, 2019

    PARAMARIBO, Feb 14 (IPS) - IPS Correspondent Desmond Brown interviews DR. ARMSTRONG ALEXIS, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) resident representative for Suriname.

    As High Forest Cover and Low Deforestation (HFLD) nations meet in Suriname at a major conference, it is obvious that the decision made by these countries to preserve their forests has been a difficult but good one.

  8. The Role Technology Can Play in Fighting Climate Change and Deforestation

    Thursday, February 14, 2019

    PARAMARIBO, Feb 14 (IPS) - At 51, Roberto Wong Loi Sing has spent nearly half of his life working in the field of engineering. But as he spends his days designing more efficient stormwater management systems, or water purification systems, for instance, the child in him comes alive as he combines his skills to find "win-win" solutions for the environment.

  9. Rapa Nui’s Stone Statues and Marine Resources Face Threats from Climate Change

    Thursday, February 14, 2019

    HANGA ROA, Chile, Feb 14 (IPS) - Social activists and local authorities in Rapa Nui or Easter Island are calling for urgent action to address rising sea temperatures, declining rainfall, and rising tides that threaten their fishing resources and their Moais, the mysterious volcanic stone monoliths.

  10. How Devastating is Climate Change for World Peace & Security?

    Wednesday, February 13, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Feb 13 (IPS) - When the Security Council, the most powerful body at the United Nations, met last month to discuss the growing new threats to world peace and security, the discussion veered away from international terrorism, nuclear Armageddon and the rash of ongoing military conflicts in the Middle East, Asia and Africa.

  11. More stories…

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Issues In depth

Latest

Action on climate change is cheaper than inaction

Posted Monday, February 02, 2015.

Many are afraid that tackling climate change is going to be too costly. But increasingly, studies are showing action will not just be cheaper than inaction, but could actually result in economic, environmental and even health benefits, while improving sustainability.

Read “Action on climate change is cheaper than inaction” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming Introduction

Last updated Sunday, February 01, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing.

Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section looks at what causes climate change, what the impacts are and where scientific consensus currently is.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming Introduction” to learn more.

COP20—Lima Climate Conference

Posted Saturday, January 24, 2015.

An overview of the Climate Change Conference (also known as COP 20), held in Lima, Peru in December 2014.

While it seemed like it was a successful meeting, because developing nations were committed to drawing up their own plans for emissions reductions for the first time, a number of important issues were left undecided such as how financing would work.

This page is an overview of the Lima Climate conference.

Read “COP20—Lima Climate Conference” to learn more.

Ebola Outbreak in West Africa

Posted Saturday, September 27, 2014.

An overview of the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa that has been described by the World Health Organization as the largest, most severe and most complex outbreak in the history of the disease.

The epidemic began at the end of 2013, in Guinea. From there it spread to Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Senegal. Many of the affected countries face enormous challenges in stopping its spread and providing care for all patients.

Thousands of people have died and many are at risk as the fatality rate from this virus is very high. As the crisis worsens, as well as the enormous health challenges involved, the social and economic consequences may set these countries back, reversing some gains a number of these countries have made in recent years.

Read “Ebola Outbreak in West Africa” to learn more.

Foreign Aid for Development Assistance

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

In 1970, the world’s rich countries agreed to give 0.7% of their gross national income as official international development aid, annually.

Since that time, billions have certainly been given each year, but rarely have the rich nations actually met their promised target.

For example, the US is often the largest donor in dollar terms, but ranks amongst the lowest in terms of meeting the stated 0.7% target.

Net ODA in dollars and percent of GNI

Furthermore, aid has often come with a price of its own for the developing nations. Common criticisms, for many years, of foreign aid, have included the following:

  • Aid is often wasted on conditions that the recipient must use overpriced goods and services from donor countries
  • Most aid does not actually go to the poorest who would need it the most
  • Aid amounts are dwarfed by rich country protectionism that denies market access for poor country products while rich nations use aid as a lever to open poor country markets to their products
  • Large projects or massive grand strategies often fail to help the vulnerable; money can often be embezzled away.

This article explores who has benefited most from this aid, the recipients or the donors.

Read “Foreign Aid for Development Assistance” to learn more.

Nature and Animal Conservation

Last updated Sunday, January 19, 2014.

Preserving species and their habitats is important for ecosystems to self-sustain themselves.

Yet, the pressures to destroy habitat for logging, illegal hunting, and other challenges are making conservation a struggle.

Read “Nature and Animal Conservation” to learn more.

More updates

Most Popular

Poverty Facts and Stats

Last updated Monday, January 07, 2013.

Most of humanity lives on just a few dollars a day. Whether you live in the wealthiest nations in the world or the poorest, you will see high levels of inequality.

The poorest people will also have less access to health, education and other services. Problems of hunger, malnutrition and disease afflict the poorest in society. The poorest are also typically marginalized from society and have little representation or voice in public and political debates, making it even harder to escape poverty.

By contrast, the wealthier you are, the more likely you are to benefit from economic or political policies. The amount the world spends on military, financial bailouts and other areas that benefit the wealthy, compared to the amount spent to address the daily crisis of poverty and related problems are often staggering.

Some facts and figures on poverty presented in this page are eye-openers, to say the least.

Read “Poverty Facts and Stats” to learn more.

Global Financial Crisis

Last updated Sunday, March 24, 2013.

Following a period of economic boom, a financial bubble — global in scope — burst, even causing some of the world’s largest financial institutions have collapsed. With the resulting recession, many governments of the wealthiest nations in the world have resorted to extensive bail-out and rescue packages for the remaining large banks and financial institutions while imposing harsh austerity measures on themselves.

Some of the bail-outs have also led to charges of hypocrisy due to the apparent socializing of the costs while privatizing the profits. Furthermore, the institutions being rescued are typically the ones got the world into this trouble in the first place. For smaller businesses and poorer people, such options for bail out and rescue are rarely available when they find themselves in crisis.

Plummeting stock markets at one point wiped out 33% of the value of companies, $14.5 trillion. Taxpayers bailed out their banks and financial institutions with large amounts of money. US taxpayers alone have spent some $9.7 trillion in bailout packages and plans. The UK and other European countries have also spent some $2 trillion on rescues and bailout packages. More is expected. Much more.

Such numbers, made quickly available, are enough to wipe many individual’s mortgages, or clear out third world debt many times over. Even the high military spending figures are dwarfed by the bailout plans to date.

Taxpayers are paying for some of the largests costs in history

This problem could have been averted (in theory) as people had been pointing to these issues for decades. However, during boom, very few want to hear such pessimism. Does this crisis spell an end to the careless forms of banking and finance and will it herald a better economic age, or are we just doomed to keep forgetting history and repeat these mistakes in the future? Signs are not encouraging as rich nations are resisting meaningful reform…

Read “Global Financial Crisis” to learn more.

Causes of Poverty

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

Poverty is the state for the majority of the world’s people and nations. Why is this? Is it enough to blame poor people for their own predicament? Have they been lazy, made poor decisions, and been solely responsible for their plight? What about their governments? Have they pursued policies that actually harm successful development? Such causes of poverty and inequality are no doubt real. But deeper and more global causes of poverty are often less discussed.

Read “Causes of Poverty” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing. Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section explores some of the effects of climate change. It also attempts to provide insights into what governments, companies, international institutions, and other organizations are attempting to do about this issue, as well as the challenges they face. Some of the major conferences in recent years are also discussed.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming” to learn more.

Environmental Issues

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

Environmental issues are also a major global issue. Humans depend on a sustainable and healthy environment, and yet we have damaged the environment in numerous ways. This section introduces other issues including biodiversity, climate change, animal and nature conservation, population, genetically modified food, sustainable development, and more.

Read “Environmental Issues” to learn more.

Racism

Last updated Sunday, August 08, 2010.

Racism is the belief that characteristics and abilities can be attributed to people simply on the basis of their race and that some racial groups are superior to others. Racism and discrimination have been used as powerful weapons encouraging fear or hatred of others in times of conflict and war, and even during economic downturns. This article explores racism from around the world.

Read “Racism” to learn more.

More articles

Topical

Global Financial Crisis

Last updated Sunday, March 24, 2013.

Following a period of economic boom, a financial bubble — global in scope — burst, even causing some of the world’s largest financial institutions have collapsed. With the resulting recession, many governments of the wealthiest nations in the world have resorted to extensive bail-out and rescue packages for the remaining large banks and financial institutions while imposing harsh austerity measures on themselves.

Some of the bail-outs have also led to charges of hypocrisy due to the apparent socializing of the costs while privatizing the profits. Furthermore, the institutions being rescued are typically the ones got the world into this trouble in the first place. For smaller businesses and poorer people, such options for bail out and rescue are rarely available when they find themselves in crisis.

Plummeting stock markets at one point wiped out 33% of the value of companies, $14.5 trillion. Taxpayers bailed out their banks and financial institutions with large amounts of money. US taxpayers alone have spent some $9.7 trillion in bailout packages and plans. The UK and other European countries have also spent some $2 trillion on rescues and bailout packages. More is expected. Much more.

Such numbers, made quickly available, are enough to wipe many individual’s mortgages, or clear out third world debt many times over. Even the high military spending figures are dwarfed by the bailout plans to date.

Taxpayers are paying for some of the largests costs in history

This problem could have been averted (in theory) as people had been pointing to these issues for decades. However, during boom, very few want to hear such pessimism. Does this crisis spell an end to the careless forms of banking and finance and will it herald a better economic age, or are we just doomed to keep forgetting history and repeat these mistakes in the future? Signs are not encouraging as rich nations are resisting meaningful reform…

Read “Global Financial Crisis” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing. Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section explores some of the effects of climate change. It also attempts to provide insights into what governments, companies, international institutions, and other organizations are attempting to do about this issue, as well as the challenges they face. Some of the major conferences in recent years are also discussed.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming” to learn more.

Food and Agriculture Issues

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

Food and agriculture goes to the heart of our civilizations. Religions, cultures and even modern civilization have food and agriculture at their core. For an issue that goes to the heart of humanity it also has its ugly side.

This issue explores topics ranging from the global food crisis of 2008, to issues of food aid, world hunger, food dumping and wasteful agriculture such as growing tobacco, sugar, beef, and more.

Read “Food and Agriculture Issues” to learn more.

Foreign Aid for Development Assistance

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

In 1970, the world’s rich countries agreed to give 0.7% of their gross national income as official international development aid, annually.

Since that time, billions have certainly been given each year, but rarely have the rich nations actually met their promised target.

For example, the US is often the largest donor in dollar terms, but ranks amongst the lowest in terms of meeting the stated 0.7% target.

Net ODA in dollars and percent of GNI

Furthermore, aid has often come with a price of its own for the developing nations. Common criticisms, for many years, of foreign aid, have included the following:

  • Aid is often wasted on conditions that the recipient must use overpriced goods and services from donor countries
  • Most aid does not actually go to the poorest who would need it the most
  • Aid amounts are dwarfed by rich country protectionism that denies market access for poor country products while rich nations use aid as a lever to open poor country markets to their products
  • Large projects or massive grand strategies often fail to help the vulnerable; money can often be embezzled away.

This article explores who has benefited most from this aid, the recipients or the donors.

Read “Foreign Aid for Development Assistance” to learn more.

Tax Avoidance and Tax Havens; Undermining Democracy

Last updated Monday, January 07, 2013.

Through tax havens, transfer pricing and many other policies — both legal and illegal — billions of dollars of tax are avoided. The much-needed money would helped developing (and developed) countries provide important social services for their populations.

Some tax avoidance, regardless of how morally objectionable it may be to some people, is perfectly legal, and the global super elite are able to hide away trillions of dollars, resulting in massive losses of tax revenues for cash-strapped governments who then burden ordinary citizens further with austerity measures during economic crisis, for example. Yet these super elite are often very influential in politics and business. In effect, they are able to undermine democracy and capitalism at the same time.

As the global financial crisis has affected many countries, tackling tax avoidance would help target those more likely to have contributed to the problem while avoid many unnecessary austerity measures that hit the poorest so hard. But despite rhetoric stating otherwise, it does not seem to high on the agenda of many governments as you might think.

Read “Tax Avoidance and Tax Havens; Undermining Democracy” to learn more.

World Military Spending

Last updated Sunday, June 30, 2013.

World military spending had reduced since the Cold War ended, but a few nations such as the US retain high level spending.

In recent years, global military expenditure has increased again and is now comparable to Cold War levels. Recent data shows global spending at over $1.7 trillion. 2012 saw the first dip in spending — only slightly —since 1998, in an otherwise rising trend.

After a decline following the end of the Cold War, recent years have seen military spending increase

The highest military spender is the US accounting for almost two-fifths of the world’s spending, more than the rest of the G7 (most economically advanced countries) combined, and more than all its potential enemies, combined.

Read “World Military Spending” to learn more.

More issues

“If a man is offered a fact which goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. If, on the other hand, he is offered something which affords a reason for acting in accordance to his instincts, he will accept it even on the slightest evidence.” — Bertrand Russell, Roads to Freedom