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

Latest World News

World

  1. Hospital PPPs Undermine Healthcare

    Tuesday, January 22, 2019

    SYDNEY & KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 22 (IPS) - Despite all the evidence to the contraryand substantial opposition from community groups, public-private partnerships (PPPs) are still being promoted to deliver sustainable development.

    Public-private hospital partnerships are supposed to ensure that the private sector will offer much needed efficiency in healthcare provision.

  2. Never Been a Worse Time to be a Journalist

    Tuesday, January 22, 2019

    BRATISLAVA, Jan 22 (IPS) - "I've never known a time when it was as bad as it is now," says Beata Balogova, the Vice-Chair of the International Press Institute (IPI) and Editor in Chief of the Slovak Spectator Sme. "In terms of what's going on with journalists, we're in a very unique period," she adds.

  3. Asia’s Landlocked

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    BANGKOK, Thailand, Jan 21 (IPS) - Andrzej Bolesta is Economic Affairs Officer, Macroeconomic Policy and Financing for Development Division at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)Structural economic transformation and the expansion of international trade are among the most pressing issues to be addressed, if Asia's landlocked developing countries (LLDCs) are to overcome the development challenges related to their geographical locations.

  4. Strangers in the Land: A Congolese Murder Case

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    STOCKHOLM / ROME, Jan 21 (IPS) - A man walks down the street. It's a street in a strange world. Maybe it's the Third World. Maybe it's his first time around. He doesn't speak the language. He holds no currency. He is a foreign man. He is surrounded by the sound. The sound! Cattle in the marketplace, scatterlings and orphanages. He looks around, around.I thought about this song by Paul Simon while I in 2011 spent a few weeks in Kinshasa. I was a foreign man in a strange world, surrounded by sights and sounds, completely dependent on my new-found Congolese friends. When our taxi got stuck in a traffic jam and we had to walk to our destination I was stopped by a group of heavily armed youngsters, lead by a man who claimed to be a policeman, charging me with an exaggerated high fine for taking photos within a restricted area.

  5. Moving Beyond Just Building Toilets

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    PUNE, India, Jan 21 (IPS) - One of the most laudable initiatives of the current government's regime is the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) that was launched on Oct 2, 2014, with a larger vision of a clean India. The critical aspect of the mission was that—unlike many of the movements that preceded it—this had a measurable outcome (making India open defecation free) and a firm timeline (by 2019).

  6. Eat Plants, Save the Planet

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jan 21 (IPS) - While the modern agricultural system has helped stave off famines and feed the world's 7 billion residents, the way we eat and produce food is posing a threat to future populations' food security.

  7. Moving Beyond South Korea’s Hierarchal Business Structure for Sustainable Green Growth

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    SEOUL, Jan 21 (IPS) - Despite the international rise of South Korean businesses like Samsung, Hyundai and LG as global powerhouses, the corporate culture in this East Asian nation is often known to have a vertically rigid command line.

  8. Family Farming Wages a Difficult Battle in Argentina

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    BUENOS AIRES, Jan 21 (IPS) - "Our philosophy is based on two principles: zero tolerance of pesticides or bosses," says Leandro Ladrú, while he puts tomatoes and carrots in the ecological bag held by a customer, in a large market in the Argentine capital, located between warehouses and rusty old railroad cars.

  9. Quenching Humanity’s Freshwater Thirst Creates a Salty Threat

    Friday, January 18, 2019

    HAMILTON, Canada, Jan 18 (IPS) - Vladimir Smakhtin is Director, and Manzoor Qadir is Assistant Director, of the UN University Institute for Water, Environment and Health (UNU-INWEH) in Canada, hosted by the Government of Canada and McMaster University. Edward Jones, who worked on the paper at UNU-INWEH, is now a researcher at Wageningen University, The Netherlands

    Starting from a few, mostly Middle Eastern facilities in the 1960s, today almost 16,000 desalination plants are in operation in 177 countries, producing 95 million cubic meters of freshwater every day - equal to about half the flow over Niagara Falls.

  10. Davos, Inequality & the Climate Emergency

    Friday, January 18, 2019

    BERLIN, Jan 18 (IPS) - Daniel Mittler is the Political Director of Greenpeace International and is on the steering committee of the global Fight Inequality alliance.

    Four of the top five most impactful threats in this year's World Economic Forum´s Global Risks report are related to climate change. The report warns that we are "sleepwalking to disaster" . But that is not true.

    The disaster is already here, it´s not something we are still walking towards. Climate change is no future threat, it´s a current one. We have entered a new phase, one in which the impacts are coming faster, with greater intensity.

  11. More stories…

Economy

  1. Hospital PPPs Undermine Healthcare

    Tuesday, January 22, 2019

    SYDNEY & KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 22 (IPS) - Despite all the evidence to the contraryand substantial opposition from community groups, public-private partnerships (PPPs) are still being promoted to deliver sustainable development.

    Public-private hospital partnerships are supposed to ensure that the private sector will offer much needed efficiency in healthcare provision.

  2. Asia’s Landlocked

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    BANGKOK, Thailand, Jan 21 (IPS) - Andrzej Bolesta is Economic Affairs Officer, Macroeconomic Policy and Financing for Development Division at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)Structural economic transformation and the expansion of international trade are among the most pressing issues to be addressed, if Asia's landlocked developing countries (LLDCs) are to overcome the development challenges related to their geographical locations.

  3. Moving Beyond South Korea’s Hierarchal Business Structure for Sustainable Green Growth

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    SEOUL, Jan 21 (IPS) - Despite the international rise of South Korean businesses like Samsung, Hyundai and LG as global powerhouses, the corporate culture in this East Asian nation is often known to have a vertically rigid command line.

  4. Family Farming Wages a Difficult Battle in Argentina

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    BUENOS AIRES, Jan 21 (IPS) - "Our philosophy is based on two principles: zero tolerance of pesticides or bosses," says Leandro Ladrú, while he puts tomatoes and carrots in the ecological bag held by a customer, in a large market in the Argentine capital, located between warehouses and rusty old railroad cars.

  5. A New Spectre is Haunting Europe

    Thursday, January 17, 2019

    ROME, Jan 17 (IPS) - After Teresa May's defeat in the British parliament it is clear that a new spectre is haunting Europe. It is no longer the spectre of communism, which opens Marx's Manifesto of 1848; it is the spectre of the failure of neoliberal globalisation, which reigned uncontested following the fall of the Berlin Wall, until the financial crisis of 2009.

  6. Why We Should Care about Vulnerable Coastal Communities

    Wednesday, January 16, 2019

    ROME, Jan 16 (IPS) - Nigel Brett is Director of the Asia and Pacific Division at the International Fund for Agricultural Development

    According to UN statistics, approximately 40 per cent of the world's population lives within 100 kilometers of the coast, and overall the world's coastal population is increasing faster than the total global population. At the same time, global warming is causing sea levels to rise and increasing extreme weather incidents on coastlines.

  7. Building Mongolia’s Green Future

    Tuesday, January 15, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jan 15 (IPS) - A country that has contributed least to global climate change now has to cope with and adapt to the very real effects they are faced with.The landlocked country of Mongolia sparks certain images in the mind—rolling hills with horses against a picturesque backdrop.

    However, the East Asian country is facing a threat that will change its landscape: climate change.

  8. Gloom Ahead of World Economic Storm

    Tuesday, January 15, 2019

    SYDNEY & KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 15 (IPS) - In light of the uncertainty caused by the US-China trade war, the IMF expects the US economic growth to slow from a three-year high of 2.9 per cent in 2018 to 2.5 per cent in 2019, while China's expansion has already slowed in recent years, albeit from much higher levels.

  9. Q&A: 'There's a Lot More Climate Finance Available than People Think'

    Friday, January 11, 2019

    CAPE TOWN, South Africa, Jan 11 (IPS) - IPS Correspondent Yazeed Kamaldien speaks to DR. FRANK RIJSBERMAN, director-general of the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) about accessing finance for climate mitigation.

    While growth in the green economy looks promising, government regulation and a business-as-usual approach are among the hurdles inhibiting cleaner energy production.

  10. Blue Economy Can be a Lifeline for Africa

    Friday, January 11, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jan 11 (IPS) - By efficient management, the sustainable exploitation of resources in oceans, seas, lakes and rivers—also known as the blue economy—could contribute up to $1.5 trillion to the global economy, according to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, an intergovernmental organization comprising of 36 countries.

  11. More stories…

Climate

  1. Moving Beyond Just Building Toilets

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    PUNE, India, Jan 21 (IPS) - One of the most laudable initiatives of the current government's regime is the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) that was launched on Oct 2, 2014, with a larger vision of a clean India. The critical aspect of the mission was that—unlike many of the movements that preceded it—this had a measurable outcome (making India open defecation free) and a firm timeline (by 2019).

  2. Eat Plants, Save the Planet

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jan 21 (IPS) - While the modern agricultural system has helped stave off famines and feed the world's 7 billion residents, the way we eat and produce food is posing a threat to future populations' food security.

  3. Family Farming Wages a Difficult Battle in Argentina

    Monday, January 21, 2019

    BUENOS AIRES, Jan 21 (IPS) - "Our philosophy is based on two principles: zero tolerance of pesticides or bosses," says Leandro Ladrú, while he puts tomatoes and carrots in the ecological bag held by a customer, in a large market in the Argentine capital, located between warehouses and rusty old railroad cars.

  4. Quenching Humanity’s Freshwater Thirst Creates a Salty Threat

    Friday, January 18, 2019

    HAMILTON, Canada, Jan 18 (IPS) - Vladimir Smakhtin is Director, and Manzoor Qadir is Assistant Director, of the UN University Institute for Water, Environment and Health (UNU-INWEH) in Canada, hosted by the Government of Canada and McMaster University. Edward Jones, who worked on the paper at UNU-INWEH, is now a researcher at Wageningen University, The Netherlands

    Starting from a few, mostly Middle Eastern facilities in the 1960s, today almost 16,000 desalination plants are in operation in 177 countries, producing 95 million cubic meters of freshwater every day - equal to about half the flow over Niagara Falls.

  5. Q&A: 17 Percent of the Problem, but 30 Percent of the Solution

    Friday, January 18, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jan 18 (IPS) - IPS Correspondent Tharanga Yakupitiyage interviews United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) Coordinator of Freshwater, Land, and Climate Branch TIM CHRISTOPHERSENFrom expansive evergreen forests to lush tropical forests, the Earth's forests are disappearing on a massive scale. While deforestation poses a significant problem to the environment and climate, trees also offer a solution.

  6. Wasting & Dining: the New Water Dilemma

    Thursday, January 17, 2019

    STOCKHOLM, Sweden, Jan 17 (IPS) - Professor Jan Lundqvist is Senior Advisor at the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI)

    Concerns about the supply side of food systems are shifting from insufficient production and supply, to issues likely to affect food production in the medium and long term, such as water risks, global warming and environmental consequences.

  7. Climate Change Threatens Mexico's Atlantic Coast

    Thursday, January 17, 2019

    FELIPE CARRILLO PUERTO, Mexico, Jan 17 (IPS) - "I couldn't plant my cornfield in May, because it rained too early. I lost everything," lamented Marcos Canté, an indigenous farmer, as he recounted the ravages that climate change is wreaking on this municipality on Mexico's Caribbean coast.

  8. Why We Should Care about Vulnerable Coastal Communities

    Wednesday, January 16, 2019

    ROME, Jan 16 (IPS) - Nigel Brett is Director of the Asia and Pacific Division at the International Fund for Agricultural Development

    According to UN statistics, approximately 40 per cent of the world's population lives within 100 kilometers of the coast, and overall the world's coastal population is increasing faster than the total global population. At the same time, global warming is causing sea levels to rise and increasing extreme weather incidents on coastlines.

  9. Building Mongolia’s Green Future

    Tuesday, January 15, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Jan 15 (IPS) - A country that has contributed least to global climate change now has to cope with and adapt to the very real effects they are faced with.The landlocked country of Mongolia sparks certain images in the mind—rolling hills with horses against a picturesque backdrop.

    However, the East Asian country is facing a threat that will change its landscape: climate change.

  10. Argentina's Indigenous People Fight for Land Rights

    Saturday, January 12, 2019

    TARTAGAL, Argentina, Jan 12 (IPS) - Nancy López lives in a house made of clay, wood and corrugated metal sheets, on private land dedicated to agriculture. She is part of an indigenous community of 12 families in northern Argentina that, like almost all such communities, has no title to the land it occupies and lives under the constant threat of eviction.

  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