James Henry: Global tax revenue lost to tax havens is between USD $190 billion and $255 billion per year, assuming a 3% capital gains rate and a 30% capital gains tax rate – April 14, 2013
The Maumee & Western Railroad (reporting mark MAW) is located between Defiance and Napoleon, Ohio. It is a 15 mile long, shortline railroad. The line has three locomotives, ex-Illinois Central GP10 #16 (a GP9 rebuild) and two ex-Santa Fe Railway GP7U’s (CNUR). Trains operate daily between Napoleon and Defiance, except for Saturdays and Sundays. This was a former Wabash Railroad mainline, which ran Westward from Toledo to Fort Wayne, IN. After the merger between Norfolk & Western Railroad and the Wabash Railroad, it became a neglected branch line under N&W, later being sold by Norfolk Southern to the Indiana Hi-Rail Company in the mid-80s.. Maumee & Western acquired the line in 1997 with financial assistance from the ORDC (after the Indiana Hi-Rail liquidated). The line passes through an area known as the Great Black Swamp. Combined with the fact that it was lightly built to start with, means lots of headaches. Maumee & Western, with continued assistance from the State of Ohio, has made some progress, but no heavy maintenance has been done to this track since the Wabash days (around 1964). The local port authority has offered to purchase the line, but Maumee & Western isn’t interested in selling.
The first scene takes place on Friday November 4th, 2011, in Defiance. #16 was kicking out several cars for Monday’s 16-car long train to Napoleon. #5 (CNUR) can be seen at Defiance Yard resting her old GP7U carbody. #5 is often used for shunting freight cars at Defiance Yard, but occasionally makes it out when #16 needs a little more assistance with handling a train. It was interesting to see this operation being carried out. However, this was the last move of the day, and I was not able to shoot any more footage of the MAW. So, due to popular demand, and requests from my fellow YouTuber’s, I set out to film MAW again. I caught up with #16 on December 28th, which was hauling empties back to Defiance Yard, just North of a small town called Jewel, Ohio. #16 is again seen in duty, hauling this train on what is considered to be, “THE WORST STRETCH OF RAILROAD TRACK IN NORTH AMERICA.”
An employee followed the train in a white maintenance truck the entire way, just to make sure nothing derailed. It was a blustery, 30-or-so-degrees Fahrenheit day; but it made the day ever more interesting. The rails seemed to resemble spaghetti noodles, strung out a crossed a golden plain. As the train entered into the center of Jewel, you can see the empties, “bob-n’-weave,” as they slowly crawl down the track. A stray cat is seen walking the rails in this video, and I bet the cat could give Maumee & Western a run for their money – speed wise! Overall, this was a fun trip. The employees were very friendly, waved at me most of the time, and even gave me information on where to get the next best shot. I recommend giving the Maumee & Western a try next time you’re out in this neck of the woods! If you’re handicap-disabled, don’t worry! Just grab a scooter and you’ll be just even paced with this slow roller of a train!
So, is this safe? You be the judge.
If you’re interested in photographing this line, Maumee & Western’s radio frequency is 160.695 (AAR Channel 39).
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AMY GOODMAN: While President Obama is reporting looking into tapping a former corporate executive to become his next top economic adviser, many economists question the path the United States is on. Last week, during our trip to Bonn, Germany, I had a chance to speak with the acclaimed Chilean economist Manfred Max-Neef. He won the Right Livelihood Award in 1983, two years after the publication of his book Outside Looking In: Experiences in Barefoot Economics. I began by asking him to explain what barefoot economics is.
MANFRED MAX-NEEF: Well, it’s a metaphor, but a metaphor that originated in a concrete experience. I worked for about ten years of my life in areas of extreme poverty in the Sierras, in the jungle, in urban areas in different parts of Latin America. And at the beginning of that period, I was one day in an Indian village in the Sierra in Peru. It was an ugly day. It had been raining all the time. And I was standing in the slum. And across me, another guy also standing in the mud — not in the slum, in the mud. And, well, we looked at each other, and this was a short guy, thin, hungry, jobless, five kids, a wife and a grandmother. And I was the fine economist from Berkeley, teaching in Berkeley, having taught in Berkeley and so on. And we were looking at each other, and then suddenly I realized that I had nothing coherent to say to that man in those circumstances, that my whole language as an economist, you know, was absolutely useless. Should I tell him that he should be happy because the GDP had grown five percent or something? Everything was absurd.
The Permaculture Credit Union pools the financial resources of people who believe in the ethics of Permaculture – care of the earth, care of people, and reinvestment of surplus for the betterment of both. We apply those resources to earth-friendly and socially responsible loans and investments.
The history of financial institutions is one of focus on the bottom line which results in overexploitation of the earth’s resources. Now, an innovative new financial institution – Permaculture Credit Union – has been established to allow its members to share their excess with other members of like mind who would use it for green and sustainable projects. The Permaculture Credit Union is perhaps the leading green credit union in the United States. We welcome new members seeking to deposit their money with a green bank or green credit union, or seeking green loans.http://www.vimeo.com/12838782
Sources: Jeff Nugent’s audio DVD of the Stanley, Tasmania, Bill Mollison 1983 PDC, In Grave Danger of Falling Food and the permies of occupy-wallstreet.com
Permaculture at Occupy Wall Street
Confrontation of the criminal class responsible for the corporate coup of the US, is vital and long overdue. But there is also a need to take responsibility and design intelligent, local strategies, to prevent the same problems of scale from repeating themselves. The notion of self sufficiency is key. We can only properly protest something, when we have reduced our dependancy on it. Permaculture offers a vast resource of practical solutions for sustainable, self sufficient living. Permies were sure not to miss the exciting opportunity to share their knowledge with those who can use it most.
I can’t express how happy it makes me to learn that the implementation of sustainability and permaculture principles is spreading to many Occupy encampments –and spreading with the same momentum as the Occupy Movement itself.
Many of the Occupy encampments have set up committees to analyze their own environmental impact, and conceive of practical solutions. Since Mobile Design Lab first installed a grey water system (more below), sustainability committees in different parts of the country have introduced peddle powered generators, solar panels, bike sharing programs and permaculture workshops. There are also pottery classes, as part of an effort to reduce waste in the form of discarded Styrofoam. There are even long term projects, such as composting and gardening.
What is happening is bigger than Permaculture, even bigger than Sustainability: it is real Democracy. OWS is proving that we, the 99%, are perfectly capable of creating our own, truly democratic systems. We are very efficient when it comes to getting things done, when we decide to take care of business ourselves. We are proving that horizontal organization works great. Change doesn’t need to be squeezed through a hierarchical bottleneck; nor does it need to trickle down to us, we can do it together. Via Permaculture Occupy Wall St & Campus Progress
Bill Mollison Permaculture Design Course 1983
“Hunger is rising, absolute hunger is rising, food’s badly distributed, not distributed at all often. The waste of food, the whole deal of it….its eh, a shocking situation, it’s just inhuman. It’s what nobody would intend, and somehow what we’ve arrived at, and we arrived at it by the erection of financial structures, totally divorced from resources. So that the fiscal economy has been a runaway system. We’ve gotta tackle that head on. That is, what I’m trying to tell you, it’s no good any longer just being an organic gardener or farmer, we have to be effective financial and political units. And we’re gonna have to face that. Just as it was very hard for us to learn to garden, then hard for us to learn to collect seeds, once the multinationals took over the open-pollinated seed market; we had to become seed growers. Now its very difficult, we have to become bankers.There’s no good trying to pretend we don’t have to. We can run away to the bush, build a mud hut and grow ducks in the garden, it’s not gonna do it. The coals will still be burnt, the land will still be eroded, and the forests will still be cleared for newsprint if we run away to the bush. So, there’s no escape, we’ve just gotta stop running away, stay where we are and start to face up and fight.” 1983 pdc bill mollison
They are saying we are all losers, but the true losers are down there on Wall Street. They were bailed out by billions of our money. We are called socialists, but here there is always socialism for the rich. They say we don’t respect private property, but in the 2008 financial crash-down more hard-earned private property was destroyed than if all of us here were to be destroying it night and day for weeks. They tell you we are dreamers. The true dreamers are those who think things can go on indefinitely the way they are. We are not dreamers. We are the awakening from a dream that is turning into a nightmare.
There is a danger. Don’t fall in love with yourselves. We have a nice time here. But remember, carnivals come cheap. What matters is the day after, when we will have to return to normal lives. Will there be any changes then? I don’t want you to remember these days, you know, like “Oh. we were young and it was beautiful.” Remember that our basic message is “We are allowed to think about alternatives.” If the rule is broken, we do not live in the best possible world. But there is a long road ahead. There are truly difficult questions that confront us. We know what we do not want. But what do we want? What social organization can replace capitalism? What type of new leaders do we want?
Film by Chris Spannos, The New Significance