American philanthropy has been undergoing a major resurgence in the last few decades, leading some to dub this a ‘golden age’ for giving. At the same time, wealth concentration and inequality, the gap between rich and poor, has been on the increase. Author of a new book called The Givers, David Callahan, explains why these two trends are fueling each other and what needs to change to avoid oligarchy.
For today’s Humanosphere podcast, we are talking with Halldóra Mogensen, an MP with Iceland’s Pirate Party. For those who may not be aware of the Pirate Party as a serious political movement – it’s not about dressing up with an eye patch – let’s just say at the outset that this political party exists by name in some 40 countries worldwide and was started more than a decade ago largely to protect personal freedom and promote institutional transparency in this new digital age.
The world is watching with anticipation today as President Donald Trump continues his first meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. Without a set discussion agenda, the two leaders will presumably talk about trade, North Korea, and, after last night’s U.S. missile strike, Syria, among other topics. But less certain is whether or not they will broach the subject of climate change – a threat to global stability with far-reaching consequences, including human trafficking.
Direct Relief has contributed $32 million in medical resources for Colombia and Peru, where historic flooding and mudslides have killed hundreds of the region’s most vulnerable people and displaced hundreds of thousands more.
People who are driven to migrate by floods, droughts and other disasters linked to climate change come overwhelmingly from middle-income countries, not the poorest parts of the world, as is commonly believed, new research finds.
President Trump said Thursday night that the United States had carried out a missile strike in Syria in response to the Syrian government’s chemical weapons attack this week, which killed more than 80 civilians. “Tonight, I ordered a targeted military strike on the air base in Syria from where the chemical attack was launched,” Mr. Trump said in remarks at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida. “It is in this vital national security interest of the United States to prevent and deter the spread and use of deadly chemical weapons.” (NY Times)
Costa Rica is one of the happiest and healthiest countries in the world, but is one of few in Latin America that is seeing an increase in income inequality. Experts at the U.N. Development Program say the growing income gap disproportionately impacts the country’s indigenous populations and other minorities.
The Disasters Emergency Committee said it raised £50 million in three weeks to support humanitarian aid for people in East Africa. While it is good news in the short term, there is concern that the constant cycle of these emergency appeals fails to help address underlying issues.
India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi celebrated his party’s state election victories last month by describing his vision for a “new India” – one that “stands for development” by giving the poor a “leg-up, not a handout.” Offering a boost is India’s largest online job portal for entry-level and informal work, Babajob, which connects even illiterate low-skill workers to employers through digital technology.
Hundreds of South Sudanese refugees fled into Uganda for a second day on Wednesday, bearing further grim testimony of an attack by government forces on the border town of Pajok in which at least 17 people were killed. Some were shot as they tried to flee. Others had their throats slit before their bodies were strung up from door frames. (Reuters)
Nigeria launched a vaccination campaign to stop the meningitis outbreak responsible for killing more than 300 people. Health workers will administer some 500,000 vaccinations in the northwest part of the country to protect people against the deadly disease. Another 800,000 vaccine doses are expected to arrive from the U.K. to be distributed throughout the country.
The Haitian government is eager to tap into the country’s abundant reserves of precious metals, but civil society organizations say that without adequate oversight, mining operations might do more harm than good.
The United Nations Security Council prepared for emergency talks on Wednesday after the worst chemical attack in Syria in years, as condemnation of the assault continued to pour in and donor nations met in Brussels and called yet again for an end to the six-year war.“The horrific events of yesterday demonstrate, unfortunately, that war crimes are going on in Syria,” António Guterres, the United Nations secretary general, said in Brussels on Wednesday. (NY Times)