Why Student Debt? What Can We Do about It?

Written by David A. Jones (Guest Author) on . Posted in Environment & Health & Education, Power & Democracy

A lot of students like me (and a lot of people in general) are opposed to tuition fees and the coalition government’s decision to dramatically increase them next year. This is not merely for selfish reasons. In my view, tuition fees are bad news chiefly because they turn university from an education into an investment.

We badly need individuals who can think in new ways to solve today’s diverse problems – many of which are being caused by “business as usual”. Universities are one place where such individuals can be nurtured; but not if courses devolve into glorified job training centers at the behest of students themselves, anxious to graduate into the kind of structured careers that can repay their debts. There is such a thing as society, and tuition fees are bad for it. Συνέχεια

Who’s Getting Walloped by the Economy? Go Ask ALICE

Posted on by dsalaborblogmoderator

by Gregory Heires


(Photo Flickr/Eric Gravengaard)

(Photo Flickr/Eric Gravengaard)


 Occupy Wall Street struck a deep chord with its notion that the fundamental divide in our country is between the “1 percent” and the rest of us.


That facile rhetorical device brilliantly captured the sharpening of the gross economic inequality in the United States and how the economy is leaving so many of us behind.


But we all know—and OWS activists would be the first to acknowledge—that our social stratification is in fact more complicated than the 1 percent versus 99 percent division suggests, with cleavages not only within class lines but also differences among racial, ethnic and gender groups and based on immigrant status.


Occupy Wall Street focused attention on the young educated work force.


At the height of the OWS revolt, the media paid less attention to the working poor, a group that encompasses tens of millions of Americans who live above the federal poverty line but are only a paycheck away from economic calamity. They have little hope of seeing their living standards improve unless the federal government and state governments adopt more progressive economic policies, unions become stronger and more inclusive, and political pressure leads to higher wages. The retail workers movement has helped raised greater awareness of the working poor, and it is building on Occupy Wall Street’s success in moving the country’s political discourse to the left. Συνέχεια

Τα εδάφη εξαίρεσης και η οικονομική γεωγραφία του καπιταλισμού: μια ερευνητική υπόθεση για τον χώρο στην Ελλάδα της κρίσης


Εικόνα5Θάνος Ανδρίτσος


Η παρακάτω εισήγηση ανακοινώθηκε στο συνέδριο: “Μεταβολές και Ανασημασιοδοτήσεις του Χώρου στη Εποχή της Κρίσης”, Βόλος, Τμήμα Αρχιτεκτόνων Πανεπιστημίου Θεσσαλίας, 1-3/11/2013, σσ.24-31


Τα τελευταία χρόνια, μεγάλο ενδιαφέρον παρουσιάζουν οι αναφορές και οι προβληματισμοί γύρω από την «κατάσταση εξαίρεσης». Συχνά μελετώνται και οι χωρικές μορφές στις οποίες υλοποιείται, σε περιπτώσεις όπως τα στρατόπεδα συγκέντρωσης, τα κέντρα κράτησης κ.ά. Η παρούσα εργασία θα επιδιώξει τη διεύρυνση και ανανοηματοδότηση του «εδάφους εξαίρεσης» μέσα από την εστίαση σε φορολογικούς παραδείσους και Ειδικές Οικονομικές Ζώνες, καταθέτοντας μια ερευνητική υπόθεση για τη σημασία και την εφαρμογή που έχει στην κατανόηση των οικονομικών γεωγραφιών του σύγχρονου καπιταλισμού, η έννοια της «εξαίρεσης». Υπό αυτό το πρίσμα θα κατατεθούν σκέψεις για την άνιση ανάπτυξη και την κατάτμηση σε ζώνες στην εποχή της κρίσης, θέτοντας υπό διερεύνηση τους μετασχηματισμούς του χώρου στην Ελλάδα. Συνέχεια

Three Ways the Super-Rich Suck Wealth Out of the Rest of Us by Paul Buchheit

The facts are indisputable, the conclusion painful. The wealthiest people in the U.S. and around the world have used the stock market and the deregulated financial system to lay claim to the resources that should belong to all of us.

This is not a matter of productive people benefiting from their contributions to society. This is a relatively small number of people extracting massive amounts of money through the financial system for accomplishing almost nothing.

1. They’ve Taken $1.6 Million Per Family in New Wealth Since the Recession

The richest 5% of American families each gained at least that much in five years, mostly from the stock market. Using data from Credit Suisse, the Economic Policy Institute, Pew Research, and the Census Bureau and two separate analyses (shown here and here), this extraordinary wealth grab can be calculated. Συνέχεια

Wall Street is designing the future of public education as a money-making machine


Why are finance types investing in local school board elections? Just follow the money


  Wall Street is designing the future of public education as a money-making machine


This article originally appeared on AlterNet.

AlterNet Given that Arthur Rock has a net worth of $1 billion, lives in California and spends his time heaping money on tech startups (with the mantra, “Get in, get out,” as his guide), a local school board race in Atlanta, Ga. seems an unlikely candidate for his attention.

Yet there is his name, on the campaign finance disclosure reports of four candidates—two of whom were elected in November, and two who won a runoff on December 3—for the board of Atlanta Public Schools. On each report, two columns over from his name, the sum of $2,500 is listed, the maximum allowable amount. Συνέχεια

Στοιχειώνει η ανισότητα σε όλο τον κόσμο

Παρασκευή, 06 Δεκεμβρίου 2013

Γράφει: Imran Kamyana, Lal Khan – Μετάφραση: Απόστολος Δαγρές

inequalityΔιαβάστε ένα σημείωμα με στοιχεία και συμπεράσματα από την έκρηξη του καπιταλιστικού φαινομένου της κοινωνικής ανισότητας σε όλο τον κόσμο, που υπογραμμίζει την επιτακτική αναγκαιότητα του σοσιαλισμού.Παρά την ανηλεή προπαγάνδα των διεθνών μέσων ενημέρωσης, το χάσμα μεταξύ των εχόντων και των μη εχόντων αυξάνεται συνεχώς σε παγκόσμια κλίμακα. Σε αντίθεση με ό,τι θα ήθελαν να πιστεύουμε, αυτό που παρατηρούμε είναι μια μεταφορά πλούτου από τις φτωχότερες στις πλουσιότερες χώρες, σε μια κλίμακα που δεν έχουμε συναντήσει ξανά στην ιστορία. Συνέχεια

Education activists protest, rally in scores of cities (despite the weather)





Today parents, educators, students and activists around the country are staging a “Day of Action” with scores of coordinated events in more than 60 cities that sponsors hope will draw national attention to the problems of corporate-influenced school reform and to build a national movement to change the public education conversation and to increase funding for schools.


Protests, rallies, town halls and news conferences are being held to draw attention to the failures of standardized-test-based modern school reform and to discuss how to comprehensively improve schools and student achievement. A coalition of education, labor, civic and civil rights organizations is sponsoring the day nationally, with the American Federation of Teachers launching a $1.2 million in radio, print and online advertising campaign.


“Test-fixation, austerity, privatization, division, competition are not working for our students,” AFT President Randi Weingarten said. “… Our schools need evidence-based, community-based solutions like early childhood education, wraparound services, professional autonomy and development, parent voices and project-based learning.”


How effective the day turns out to be in building support remains to be seen. Protests have been growing over the past few years across the country against against school reform that is centered on the use of standardized test scores as the chief “accountability” metric and school “choice” that has led to the growing privatization of public schools. Today’s “Day of Action” marks the first time so many events — including in New York,  Florida, Texas, Illinois, California and D.C. — have been coordinated on the same day. Συνέχεια