Friends of GEO

More Signs The US Is Losing Status As Global Reserve Currency

It's Our Economy - January 14, 2019 - 3:00pm
The US dollar may one day be rivaled by the Chinese national currency – the yuan – which is likely to become a major global reserve currency, according to the governor of the Bank of England (BoE), Mark Carney. “I think it is likely that we will ultimately have reserve currencies other than the US dollar,” the UK top financial official claimed during an online question-and-answer session carried out as part of the Bank of England’s Future Forum.
Categories: Friends of GEO, SE News

The 2018 Retail Apocalypse, In 6 Charts And A Map

It's Our Economy - January 14, 2019 - 1:00pm
One of the big trends of 2017 was the ongoing “retail apocalypse,” the apparent disaster of declining sales and store closures facing brick-and-mortar retailers. Well, 2018 was more of the same. One year after rounds of store closures by J.C. Penney and Macy’s, 2018 brought shutdowns by Sears and Toys “R” Us—not to mention Mattress Firm, Bon-Ton, Abercrombie & Fitch and more. But just how apocalyptic is this retail apocalypse? CityLab took a closer look at the data and found a much more ambiguous picture than the headlines might suggest.
Categories: Friends of GEO, SE News

Interview: Fight For Promised Peace Dividend

It's Our Economy - January 13, 2019 - 11:00am
In 1992 with the collapse of the Soviet Union the citizens of the United States and the world were promised the arrival of a new era of peace and prosperity. The Cold War was over. Much of the money spent in the military standoff with the Soviets, and the preparation for a cataclysmic war, would now be diverted to peaceful ends. This massive reordering of our priorities and the windfall which would result was called the peace dividend (2). It never arrived. I know the Peace Dividend proposal is an outrageous, unprecedented, completely outside-the-box idea. That is entirely intentional.
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Tax The Rich? History Proves Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez May Be Correct

It's Our Economy - January 12, 2019 - 1:00pm
Taxes impede economic growth and high taxes kill the economy, right?. This is the belief among many who criticize Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s proposal to raise taxes on the wealthy to 70% or more.  But what does the evidence really tell us? Do high taxes really hurt the economy as much as they believe, and will lowering them have much of an impact on stimulating it? The economic literature is clear — tax breaks to encourage economic relocation or investment decisions are inefficient and wasteful. Hundreds of studies reach this conclusion. When businesses are surveyed regarding factors important to their investment decisions, taxes often come in behind proximity to markets, suppliers, and the quality of the labor force.
Categories: Friends of GEO, SE News

Shutoffs Continue As The People Of Detroit Fight For Water As A Human Right

It's Our Economy - January 12, 2019 - 1:00pm
Step onto downtown Detroit’s tiled sidewalks past the Kern Clock Tower and storefront restaurants and you’ll find Campus Martius. This small park at the center of the greatest comeback story in post-industrial America has become a symbol for life continuing after ruin. Climb into your car and drive down Woodward Avenue. Hear the bell of the QLine cars and the vibrant nightlife of the restaurants, clubs and concert halls. These are what leaders call signs of economic progress in a major city that the State of Michigan can finally take pride in. Now take a turn down any of the major bisecting streets. Drive past the Eastern Market or Wayne State University.
Categories: Friends of GEO, SE News

Trump’s Deja Vu China Trade War (Part I)

It's Our Economy - January 12, 2019 - 1:00pm
“Trade War! Trade War! When Trump pre-announced on March 2 his plan to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, the mainstream press immediately began hyping the line that trade war was looming on the horizon. Panicking, investors ran like lemmings over the stock market cliff after the steel tariff announcement; US allies huffed and puffed, promising tit-for-tat tariff responses on US agricultural goods or commercial aircraft; Trump’s traditional elite advisors, like Gary Cohn, former CEO of Goldman Sachs investment bank and head of Trump’s economic council, resigned later that week—no doubt in part due to frustration and disagreement over Trump’s unilaterally announced tariff.
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The Commons, The State And The Public: A Latin American Perspective

It's Our Economy - January 11, 2019 - 3:00pm
In recent years, many researchers and social activists from very different countries, like myself, have rediscovered the notion of the commons as a key idea to deepen social and environmental justice and democratise both politics and the economy. This reappropriation has meant questioning the vanguardist and hierarchical visions, structures and practices that for too long have characterised much of the left. This concept has resurfaced in parallel with the growing distrust in the market and the state as the main suppliers or guarantors of access to essential goods and services. The combined pressures of climate change and the crisis of capitalism that exploded in 2008…
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Do We Really Need Billionaires?

It's Our Economy - January 11, 2019 - 2:00pm
In March 2018, Forbes reported that it had identified 2,208 billionaires from 72 countries and territories.  Collectively, this group was worth $9.1 trillion, an increase in wealth of 18 percent since the preceding year.  Americans led the way with a record 585 billionaires, followed by mainland China which, despite its professed commitment to Communism, had a record 373. According to a Yahoo Finance report in late November 2018, the wealth of U.S. billionaires increased by 12 percent during 2017, while that of Chinese billionaires grew by 39 percent. These vast fortunes were created much like those amassed by the Robber Barons of the late nineteenth century. 
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Degeneration And Regeneration In Worker Cooperatives

It's Our Economy - January 11, 2019 - 2:00pm
Like all businesses, cooperatives can fail. Cooperatives can go bankrupt, but they can fail in another way too. Over time, cooperatives can degenerate. Cooperatives are said to degenerate when, under economic pressure, they abandon their cooperative principles and start adopting capitalist business practices and structures. In the worst case, given enough time and economic pressure, cooperatives can fully degenerate into privately-owned, capitalist businesses. Such businesses might still be economically viable ? they will have avoided bankruptcy ? but they can no longer be considered successful cooperatives.
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Confessions of a Non-Profit IT Director - January 11, 2019 - 3:59am

Luminometer has been in the laboratories for over a decade, helping the scientists to easily intercept results and to get ready-to-analyze results for their molecular queries. This technology has been proving consistent and reliable when it comes to water analysis.

Luminometer is a device that measures the intensity of light or the optical properties of the sample. It is a variation of the typical photometer to measure the illumination of the samples. Luminometer can be used to detect the luminance in the wide variety of assays including ATP assays, luciferase assays, for drug conjugation and discovery, gene reporter assays, etc.

A Luminometer is very essential for interpretation of experimental results and analysis. Some instruments will scan UV and fluorescence in addition to measuring light intensity. When you are looking for purchasing a Luminometer, check for the dynamic range and sensitivity of the instrument. Also, keep in mind to check the cross talks and background interferences, which should actually be not there in ideal cases and the least in general.

Assays with Luminometer:

Generally, Luminometer is widely used to measure the Adenosine Triphosphate – ATP molecule, which is considered as a chemical marker for most of the assays. ATP is found in all types of living cells. The total levels of ATP are used to measure cell viability, proliferation, and other wide range of compound and bio-modification responses.

How does the Luminometer work?

Some biological organisms produce light reactions with the help of Luciferin and luciferases, while the others produce light through the reactions with ATP. Based on the reaction of ATP with the luciferase enzyme, there is a glow and the amount of ATP is a direct measure of the intensity of light (RLU). The light produced by these reactions also called as bioluminescence could be scaled by a Luminometer. The amount of light that is produced is a direct measure of the number of ATPs present. The amount of ATP, in turn, provides a direct measurement of biological concentration and health.

Parts of Luminometer:

A Luminometer consists of a detector or a Photon Multiplier Tube (PMT) and a light-tight chamber. The Light-tight chamber is used to read the signals produced during a luminescent reaction while the PMT detects the number of photons. There are two types of PMTs being used, a current mode and a photon counting mode. The photon counting PMTs are widely accepted and reduces the work of a scientist in doing an experiment. Additional parts like liquid handling systems, filters, and automated settings are bonus considerations.

Types of Luminometer:

There are various types of Luminometer that are used for various assays. Tube Luminometer can read simple tubes and we need to measure the individual sample (tube). Though it has high sensitivity and leaves a small footprint, it increases the mechanical works of the scientist. Microplate Luminometer can do a sequential measurement of the samples placed in the microtitre plates consisting of 96 to 320 wells. These are very fast and can be used conveniently. Recent day equipment comes with automated sample injections and this option reduces the mechanical work of scientist and also is robust and reproducible. However, these are not as sensitive as the tube Luminometer and are costly. But most of the present gen labs use microplate Luminometer.


While purchasing a Luminometer, a scientist must make sure that the instrument makes the job easier rather than the other way around. Optical features, low dead volume, user-friendliness, software compatibility are also a few other things to check during the purchase.

Categories: Friends of GEO

How NYC Books Through Bars is bringing books to inmates

Shareable - Commons - January 10, 2019 - 3:51pm

I recently slipped through a sidewalk cellar door to enter the basement of Freebird Books, a large space crammed with books organized into different sections, where I spent the evening reading letters from prison inmates and selecting and packaging books for them.

Categories: Friends of GEO

By the Best Definition, The Poverty Rate Should Be Tripled

It's Our Economy - January 10, 2019 - 2:00pm
The World Bank defines poverty as “pronounced deprivation in well-being,” not only of material needs but also of health and education and security and public voice and the “opportunity to better one’s life” and the “capability of the individual to function in society.” Surveys of tens of thousands of people throughout the world found that “the poor did not focus on their material need; rather, they alluded to social and psychological aspects of poverty.”  The United Nations calls poverty the “denial of choices and opportunities, a violation of human dignity.” It’s not just a lack of money, but also the “lack of basic capacity to participate effectively in society.”
Categories: Friends of GEO, SE News

Sweden Has A 70 Percent Tax Rate And It Is Fine

It's Our Economy - January 9, 2019 - 12:00pm
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez recently suggested raising the top tax rate to 70 percent in order to raise money to fund climate change investments. Conservatives were dismayed by the proposal while liberals and leftists generally defended the proposal by pointing to the fact that top tax rates in the US were once 91 percent and by pointing to tax scholarship that says rates that high (or even higher) are optimal. One thing missing from the discussion so far is the point that a 70 percent top tax rate exists, not merely in midcentury US tax codes or in academic papers, but also in the real world right now. Sweden has a 70 percent marginal tax rate and it kicks in, not at $10 million like AOC proposes, but at around $98,000. AOC’s proposal is quite modest by comparison.
Categories: Friends of GEO, SE News

How Activists Are Moving The Dial On Student Loan Debt

It's Our Economy - January 9, 2019 - 12:00pm
Student loan debt has just reached an all-time high of $1.465 trillion. That’s double the $675 billion in loan debt amassed in June 2009, according to a recent report from Bloomberg. With more than 44.5 million people in some type of student loan debt, it’s increasingly becoming part of the platforms of high-profile progressive policymakers. The national conversation has come a long way in the years since activists started pushing the issue of student debt during the 2008 recession. Now, incoming Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is vocal about the idea of student loan debt cancellation and Sen. Bernie Sanders talked about making public college tuition-free during his presidential campaign.
Categories: Friends of GEO, SE News
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