December 25th, 2009

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Money as the Root of Starvation

This article discusses how market dynamics can lead to famines.  It's pretty straightforward: when a culture believes that everything must be owned by somebody, and that it's okay to kill people for not having enough money, a typical result is that some people wind up with way more than they need while others starve and die.  Personally, I'm not okay with that, but I'm a minority opinion.

Laurent Pinsolle | How the Free Market Leads to Famines
Laurent Pinsolle, Marianne2: "In its November 21 issue, The Economist looks into the fascinating theme of agriculture and wonders what we shall do to feed the world. Although it supports deregulation, the uber-capitalist free market weekly nonetheless provides arguments for its opponents."
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Solar Villages

One nifty thing about renewable energy is that it's scattered all over the Earth.  A given source may not be available everywhere, but most places are within easy reach of some or another source(s) of renewable energy.  That's terrific if you're in the middle of nowhere and don't have convenient access to a standard electrical grid.  You can make your own in various ways.  Here's an example...

Solar Villages Light Up the Andes
Marcela Valente, Inter Press Service: "The residents of the Puna, the dry Andean highlands in northern Argentina, are cut off from everything - except the sun. Living on arid land thousands of metres above sea level, they are on their way to becoming 'solar villages.' In the north and northwest of Jujuy province, people are finding that solar energy, a clean and inexhaustible source, can replace firewood, which is increasingly scarce. The EcoAndina Foundation is showing the way through a series of projects."