Article: Deceleration & Sustainability | OpEdNews

Something to ruminate on:

“Adrienne Goehler exhorted conference attendees to support a “basic income grant” as a universal right. She put it succinctly: the current system forces overproduction in all realms, even art. The current system of grants for artists, inadequate in so many other ways, operates almost exclusively on a project basis, forcing artists who seek support to think in terms of novelty and output rather than allowing adequate time for work to evolve and emerge organically. As Adrienne said, sustainability needs deceleration. All of us need the leisure to rest, ruminate, imagine ways to throw off the chain of overproduction and overconsumption and rediscover a way of living in balance with each other and the life this planet supports.

“Guaranteed annual income,” “basic income grant,” and “guaranteed minimum income” (or six other ways of saying the same thing) describes a stipend available without a means test or other conditions to any and every person. There’s an international coalition–Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), which holds its 15th annual congress in Montreal this summer–organized around three simple principles defining a basic income:

it is being paid to individuals rather than households;
it is paid irrespective of any income from other sources;
it is paid without requiring the performance of any work or the willingness to accept a job if offered.
The phrase “basic income grant” struck me with a powerful resonance–two, in fact. First, since the problem with so much arts advocacy is that it is perceived as special pleading by a class of citizens for their own support–a hot potato–a basic income grant would help to cool things down. When everyone has the same entitlement, the whole conversation changes. We have a glimmer of this in the use that performing arts groups sometimes make of unemployment insurance, with companies paying in during the season when artists and other workers are employed in mounting plays and concerts, and members of the company collecting unemployment to tide them over during the off-season. I’ve heard it said more than once that unemployment benefits are the largest single source of subsidy for U.S. performing arts. I haven’t done the math to verify that, but the basic point stands regardless.”–

IJC fighting to save Lake Erie

Hidden costs of algae bloom to consumers. Here is excerpt from article:

“In cases where harmful algae blooms (HABs) appear, municipal water treatment facilities drawing water supplies from Lake Erie may need to carry out additional treatment before the water is safe for human consumption,” the report said.

It noted that a survey of 15 public water systems in Ohio showed that 10 used additional treatments on lake water as a result of HABs. 

“These treatments included the application of powdered activated carbon, chlorine dioxide, and potassium permanganate. Additional control costs totaled $417,200 for the 10 water utilities, ranging from individual plant costs of $400 to $240,000. It is important to note that algal bloom events of 2009 were less severe than in 2011, and as such, these costs can be seen as a conservative estimate,” the report said. 

Ratepayers are wary of the issue, as well. “Public concerns about the impact of HABs on drinking water in Lake Erie were heightened in the summer of 2013,” the report said. 

Lake Erie has not always faced such tough health problems. “Once a success story about how a polluted lake can be brought back to life, [it] is once again struggling to survive,” CBC News reported. 

The IJC is trying to fight for the lake. Along with releasing the report, the body “announced an ambitious plan to improve the water quality in Lake Erie,” according to The State Column. 

It proposed “a 46 percent cut in the average annual phosphorus load in Lake Erie’s central and western basins to reduce the hypoxic dead zone, and a 39 percent cut in the average annual phosphorus contributed by the Maumee River to reduce harmful algal blooms,” Circle Of Blue reported. 

The group tried to make sure its recommendations would actually go somewhere. 

“The Commission recommended achieving those reductions by applying Public Trust Doctrine legal principles to write and enforce restrictions that have been unattainable using conventional regulation,” the report said. ”

Look What $600,000 Will Buy You Today in Stamford, NY!

A piece of Americana just lost by fire. Some things can’t be replaced:

“The seven story structure opened in July, 1888 as the “Queen of the Catskills” most magnificent hotel.  70,000 square fee of fabulous. Later more than 30 chefs would could up local delicacies for the rich and famous of the day.  Movie’s “Tarzan,” Johnny Weissmuller  once was the lifeguard at the hotel’s pool.  The hotel sits on almost 8 acres over looking its own lake.”

The jewel of the Catskills, Cyr Center, up in flames – so sad.

Exceptional ice in the Great Lakes

Ice and snow help slow evaporation of water on Great Lakes. Ice slows commercial traffic but it also means waters levels will be up.

“A brutally cold winter has covered the Great Lakes with more ice than they have seen since 1979. Special correspondent Elizabeth Bracket of WTTW reports on the struggle to keep shipping lanes open to Chicago’s ice-clogged harbor to Lake Michigan.”

River institute head named co-chair of science committee – News – Cornwall Seaway News

Ridal joins four other local scientists including Henry Lickers, environmental science officer with the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne. Matthew Thompson, environmental resource co-ordinator from the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe and Clarkson University biologist Dr. Michael R. Twiss. 

“I am looking forward to having this unique opportunity to work with dedicated scientists for the benefit of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River in this new role,” said Ridal.

Article: Ukraine’s Far-Right Deconstructed | OpEdNews

This explains a lot. Excerpt from OpEdNews:

The new Interior Minister of the Ukrainian government is Dmytro Yarosh, leader of the Right Sector.  Here are some excerpts from a review he gave during the Maidan to Mustafa Nayyem and Oksana Kovalenko, two Ukrainian journalists:  (click here).

“I’m the founder and leader of the all-Ukrainian organization Stepan Bandera Trident since 1994, holding various positions from commander to chief inspector. Trident is like an order of knights, propagandizing Stepan Bandera’s Ukrainian nationalist ideology, promoting patriotism among Ukrainian youth, and defending the honor and dignity of the Ukrainian nation by all means available. It created Right Sector to coordinate the actions of various revolutionary groups. 

Training takes place at camps throughout Ukraine: Besides military training, we organize events aimed at the de-communization and decolonization of Ukraine.”–s-Far-Right-Deco-by-Deena-Stryker-Anti-Muslim_Attitudes_Britain_Conflict-140304-379.html

Daily Kos :: Almost 4 million uninsured denied mental health care in states that won’t expand Medicaid

Working with an author on explaining what universal healthcare coverage would look like in the USA and came across this article. Here is an excerpt:
“The 11 southern states that are not moving toward Medicaid expansion are home to 2.7 million people with mental illness. Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Missouri and Mississippi each have between 100,000 and 200,000 such uninsured adults. Georgia has 233,000 residents who suffer from mental illness, according to data compiled through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
These 25 states have about 55 percent of all uninsured people with mental illness, the Association reports. Mental health, including substance abuse, treatment is now included as an essential health benefit in all health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act. That is, for those who aren’t left out.”