The Virtues of Deglobalization

The current global downturn, the worst since the Great Depression 70 years ago, pounded the last nail into the coffin of globalization. Already beleaguered by evidence that showed global poverty and inequality increasing, even as most poor countries experienced little or no economic growth, globalization has been terminally discredited in the last two years. As the much-heralded process of financial and trade interdependence went into reverse, it became the transmission belt not of prosperity but of economic crisis and collapse.

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Unhappy Labor Day

Source: The Progressive

It’s Labor Day and the American worker doesn’t have a lot to celebrate.

Unemployment stands at 9.7 percent-that’s 15 million people out of work, officially, and millions more unofficially.

“Nearly one in six workers are now unemployed or underemployed,” notes the Economic Policy Institute.

Many of those who are lucky enough to still have work have seen their hours and benefits cut back, or have been forced to take unpaid furloughs. Twenty percent of companies have suspended their contributions to 401(k) plans or other pensions. read more

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IMF May Withhold $164 Million Allocated to Honduras

Source: CEPR

IMF spokesperson Bill Murray indicated today that the Fund may not allow the de facto government of Honduras to have access to $164 million dollars that it was allocated on August 28.

Rebeca Santos, Finance Minister for the constitutional government of President Manuel Zelaya of Honduras, told CEPR that their government had received assurances from the IMF that the de facto government would not be allowed access to these funds.

When asked if he could confirm this, Mr. Murray indicated that he could not officially do so, but also said "you should go with what you were told" by the Finance Minister. read more


The Soy Republic of Argentina

March Against Soy
The increasing export of genetically modified crops is part of a regional trend with Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay now adopting a soy-based economic model. Argentina has made a radical shift toward soy, which has displaced cultivation of many grains and vegetables and even its beef production, the nation's diet staple and renowned around the world. Once a highly industrialized nation and agriculturally diverse, Argentina now uses more than half of its total arable land for monoculture soy.

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The Secret History of Hurricane Katrina

Source: Mother Jones

Confronted with images of corpses floating in the blackened floodwaters or baking in the sun on abandoned highways, there aren’t too many people left who see what happened following Hurricane Katrina as a purely "natural" disaster. The dominant narratives that have emerged, in the four years since the storm, are of a gross human tragedy, compounded by social inequities and government ineptitude-a crisis subsequently exploited in every way possible for political and financial gain. read more

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IMF bails out Honduras Coup Regime

Source: The Dominion

Reuters’ Spanish service and Venezeuala’s Telesur are reporting that the IMF granted US$150 million to the defacto regime in Honduras, which is now into into its third month.

Both reports stem from a press release by the Honduran Central Bank (BCH).

The BCH release reads (in part):

"At the initiative of the twenty industrialized and emerging countries (G-20), presided by the Prime Minister of England, Gordon Brown, the International Monetary Fund injects liquidity into the world economy and Honduras augments it’s international reserves by $150.1 million." read more