Posts Tagged 'new york times'

Where’s your trash going?

If you read just one item this evening it should be this article:

“Smuggling Europe’s Waste to Poorer Countries.” The New York Times.

European governments increasingly mandate that companies recycle their waste or dispose of it in an environmentally friendly way. But green disposal of thousands of tons of waste is expensive, so several corporations have found a cheaper way to get rid of their trash: send it to the global south.

In some European countries this is illegal, and inspectors chase down those who ship their waste to countries like China and Brazil. But in the U.S., where disposal laws are much more lax, sending our broken refrigerators, cracked ipods and beat up televisions to Brazilian backyards is quite alright.

The article points out some of the major obstacles to creating a greener, more sustainable world system.

Read the article. Let me know what you think.



News roundup

Some reading material …

High Five Nation, The New York Times, David Brooks

An excerpt: “When you look from today back to 1945, you are looking into a different cultural epoch, across a sort of narcissism line. Humility, the sense that nobody is that different from anybody else, was a large part of the culture then.”

Young Adults Likely to Pay Big Share of Reform’s Cost, The Washington Post, Shailagh Murray

An excerpt: “A 2008 study by the Urban Institute found that more than 10 million young adults ages 19 to 26 lack health insurance coverage. For many of those people, health-care reform would offer the promise of relatively inexpensive individual policies, which do not exist in many states today. The trade-off is that young people would no longer be permitted to bet on their good health: All the reform legislation before Congress would require individuals to buy at least minimal coverage.”


News roundup

Two interesting pieces in today’s paper analyze national change:

“Invisible Immigrants, Old and Left with ‘Nobody to Talk To.'”

Patricia Leigh Brown, New York Times

Older immigrants are a “gathering force” in the U.S. — seniors now make up the fastest-growing immigrant age group. But few people have written about their experiences, or about how this growing force stands to change the U.S. Why? I like how Judith Treas, a sociology professor, puts it, “They never win spelling bees. They do not join criminal gangs. And nobody worries about Americans losing jobs to Korean grandmothers.” Read Brown’s piece for some insight into the lives of invisible immigrants.

“Missing Richard Nixon.”

Paul Krugman, New York Times

Now there’s an unlikely headline for the Times’ opinion page. But I like the question Krugman poses in this op-ed: Will Obama’s administration really be as transformational as he promised? Krugman explains the way U.S. politics have changed in the past forty years, and why it’s so much harder to create change and reform today.


PS. If I wrote you an e-mail, write me back. How has your life been affected by the crisis? How has it changed your thinking about the world around you? E-mail me at

News roundup

There’s lots of talk about ch-ch-changes going on:

“Going Green At Home” Diane Rehm Show, National Public Radio

Steve Roberts sits in for Diane Rehm and talks about how individuals are changing their consumption habits, not just because they feel groovy and crunchy, but because it makes economic sense. As Seth Bauer of Cooler Inc. says “We’ve been living in the frat party years of human consumption.” That model, he says, is unsustainable.

To listen to the podcast, go here: Going Green At Home. Scroll down and you can download the segment.

“G.D.P. R.I.P.” Eric Zencey, The New York Times

The GDP is the most widely cited measure of economic well-being. But it’s also deeply flawed, writes Eric Zencey, who argues that we need a new way to assess national welfare.

If there is one upshot to the economic crisis, it’s this: We’ve entered an era of creative construction that could send us looking for alternate ways to measure prosperity. (Ever wonder why we use economic output, not social benefit, to calculate how we’re doing as a country? This op-ed will interest you.)

Essentially we’ve been praying to a measurement that rises when we spend money but doesn’t budge when we don’t. But spending money isn’t always the most efficient or beneficial way to get something done.  Case in point: “If you let the sun dry your clothes, the service is free and doesn’t show up in our domestic product; if you throw your laundry in the dryer, you burn fossil fuel, increase your carbon footprint, make the economy more unsustainable — and give G.D.P. a bit of a bump.”

Interested? Read here: G.D.P R.I.P.


P.S. William Safire says in today’s New York Times that “Clunkers” should be capitalized (see previous post). Thoughts? Read his piece here: On Language: Clunkers.

What is this blog?

The "Unstatic Blog" documents the changes going on around you and me. It will ask and answer — and then ask again — how is your world changing? Read and participate in the conversation.


/ˈstætɪk/ –adjective 1. pertaining to or characterized by a fixed or stationary condition. 2. showing little or no change: a static concept; a static relationship. 3. lacking movement, development, or vitality