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Paul Craig Roberts: Russia In The Cross Hairs

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Washington’s attack on Russia has moved beyond the boundary of the absurd into the realm of insanity.

Paul Craig Roberts, Institute for Political Economy

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Gary%20Varvel%20Russian%20Cold%20War%20Bear%20Rug.jpgGary Varvel

January 26, 2015 | Washington’s attack on Russia has moved beyond the boundary of the absurd into the realm of insanity.

The New Chief of the US Broadcasting Board of Governors, Andrew Lack, has declared the Russian news service, RT, which broadcasts in multiple languages, to be a terrorist organization equivalent to Boko Haram and the Islamic State, and Standard and Poor’s just downgraded Russia’s credit rating to junk status.

Today RT International interviewed me about these insane developments.

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate.

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Series | Haiti A Shaky Recovery, Part 3: Revival of Haiti’s withered coffee industry would boost rural livelihoods.

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Haiti’s storied coffee industry collapsed in the 1980s amid political instability and low prices. Now, it is once again seen as a promising avenue for development — but local farmers need to get reacquainted with the bean.

Ángel González, Seattle (WA) Times

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2025390690.jpgOgisna Journal, president of a coffee cooperative in Haiti, participates in Catholic Relief Services’ Mountains to Markets project. Journal was recently at the Specialty Coffee Association of America’s annual meeting in Seattle.  Mike Siegel / the Seattle Times

Enoch Télémaque, a 47-year-old farmer, remembers when the misty mountains at Haiti’s southwestern tip were among the richest pillars of a booming coffee industry.

“Everything was covered with coffee,” he said, pointing to the hills surrounding the shack where the town’s tiny coffee cooperative shelters from the rain. When he was a child, said Télémaque, raindrops meant “Everybody put on their gear to go out and plant coffee.”

Haiti was once the world’s largest coffee producer, though deforestation and neglect erased that wealth decades ago.

Ángel GonzálezSeattle (WA) Times business reporter

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Part 2: Push to make Haiti an e-cash economy fell far short

In the Western Hemisphere’s poorest country, few people have bank accounts. But cheap cellphones are ubiquitous, and for people like Johanna Joseph, they are the sole link with any form of banking.

Part 1: Five years after quake, emerging northern Haiti faces challenges

It’s been half a decade since a 7.0 earthquake ravaged Haiti, and a tiny northern fishing village has its first electricity, illuminating both the nation’s recovery and the obstacles slowing its progress.

Series | Haiti A Shaky Recovery, Part 2: Push to make Haiti an e-cash economy fell far short

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The Gates Foundation, Mercy Corps and others hoped ‘mobile wallets’ — cash disbursed via cellphones — would propel Haitians to new level of economic and financial security. Initial success gave way to failure, but now locals are reviving this effort to leapfrog into the future.

 Ángel González, Seattle (WA) Times

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2025376210.jpgJohanna Joseph, at a payment agent’s window, watches for $40 to appear on her cellphone’s “mobile wallet.’ Mike Siegel / the Seattle (WA) Times

In the Western Hemisphere’s poorest country, few people have bank accounts. But cheap cellphones are ubiquitous, and for people like Johanna Joseph, they are the sole link with any form of banking.

While most Haitians store their wealth in the form of crumpled, grimy bills, Joseph gets a monthly stipend from the government deposited directly into an electronic cash account tied to her cellphone.

One afternoon last November, the 28-year-old mother of two used the system for the first time. She withdrew the equivalent of $40 in local currency at a poorly lit shop in Carrefour, a down-and-out suburb of Port-au-Prince that still bears the scars of the 2010 earthquake.

Ángel González: Seattle (WA) Times business reporter

Full story … 

Related:

Part 1: Five years after quake, emerging northern Haiti faces challenges

It’s been half a decade since a 7.0 earthquake ravaged Haiti, and a tiny northern fishing village has its first electricity, illuminating both the nation’s recovery and the obstacles slowing its progress.

2015: A Good Year To Remind Ourselves That We Are Part Of A Community of Nations.

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  • A new resource I highly recommend to those wishing to learn about the UN: Dr. Joseph Schwartzberg's 2013 book “Transforming the United Nations System, Designs for a Workable World”: Schwartzberg 2013001 (cover illustration below).
  • Series: Haiti A Shaky Recovery | Part 1: Five years after quake, emerging northern Haiti faces challenges

 

Dick Bernard, http://www.outsidethewalls.orghttp://www.outsidethewalls.org

 

 

Schwartzberg-book001-192x300.jpgJanuary 1st, 2015 | The United Nations turns 70 this year, less than two months after the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII.

 

WWII followed WWI by about 20 years.

 

The dreaded WWIII, which could easily destroy us, has not happened and I have to believe the very existence of the United Nations is a large part of the reason our human species has survived in spite of dire threats, and in fact will continue to survive as we cobble together ways to get along.

 

Dick Bernard is a moderate pragmatic Democrat who speaks from his heart in matters of family, justice and peace.

 

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Related:

Series: Haiti A Shaky Recovery | Part 1: Five years after quake, emerging northern Haiti faces challengesÁngel González, Seattle (WA) Times

It’s been half a decade since a 7.0 earthquake ravaged Haiti, and a tiny northern fishing village has its first electricity, illuminating both the nation’s recovery and the obstacles slowing its progress.

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