Johann Hari in the Independent has an interesting take on the IMF in the wake of the Dominique Strauss-Kahn rape charges. I have read IMF horror stories for thirty years now. But I had another thought as I listened to some of the points Hari made. Forcing governments to raise the costs for low income health care (resulting in a large increase in deaths from treatable illness but increased profits for Western medical suppliers), forcing governments to reduce prenatal and early childhood medical care (resulting in a large increase in infant and child mortality while shifting the money to Western banks), forcing governments to increase the costs of educating children for poor parents (resulting in a drastic drop in school attendance while also shifting the money to Western financial institutions) sounds too much like our Repthuglican proposals. If you think I am unduly harsh read this from a Repthuglican governor who just had to pay the state for his private use of a government helicopter.
This item tickled me as an example of a snake eating its tail. When I enlisted in the Navy (a bit over 40 years ago--my goodness, where has the time gone?) they issued me an id number that appeared on my id card. Then, I don't remember exactly when, they shifted everyone over to the social security numbers. The changed didn't affect me directly because I was already out of the service but my (then) husband did get a new card with his ssn instead of the old id number. Now they are going back.
Here is another good reason for anyone retiring in Michigan on a public pension to emigrate to another state. Maybe Rick Snyder will be a one term governor.
I debated whether to link to this article. Most of it is no surprise to me who spent more time than I like to think reading history. There is an old truism from 'The Wizard of Id' that defines the Golden Rule as 'he who has the gold rules.' Recent history only underscores the truth of the observation. I like the part of this piece where the author notes the convoluted thinking that allows corporations to be legal persons without requiring them to exercise the responsibilities of persons.
Grist posted this interesting article this morning. I was totally not surprised many years ago to read that the use of low levels of antibiotics in animal feed was leading to an increase in the incidence of antibiotic resistant bacteria. Well, duh-h-h!! I didn't know that the first study on this issue came out 35 years ago. I was a bit surprised that chickens fed low doses of tetracycline quickly excreted e. coli that was resistant not only to tetracycline but to a whole group of other antibiotics as well and in rather short order (within 3 months.) Then I realized that tetracycline and the other listed antibiotics are all in the penicillin family. Nor am I very surprised that, when the politicians have to mediate between public health and private profits, the decision to date has been in favor of the latter.
Hey, Kay, you got a good one today (like all days). There is a scene in the mini-series version of Dune where Paul Atreides has a vision of Mother Romallo who tells him 'When rage and politics ride in the same cart you create a whirlwind.' I have said for some time now that we have a system where rage, politics and religion are riding in the same cart and we are creating the mother of all whirlwinds. This piece made the religious connection clear.