A top House lawmaker announced November 12 that Congress will pass a government-wide temporary spending bill to keep the government running through December 20, forestalling a government shutdown as the House turns its focus to impeachment hearings.Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey, D-N.Y., made the announcement after meeting with Senate counterpart Richard Shelby, R-Ala., in hopes of kick-starting long-delayed efforts to find agreement on $1.4 trillion worth of agency spending bills.A fight over President Donald Trump's demands for up to $8 billion in new funding for his U.S.-Mexico border fence project is largely responsible for an impasse on the huge spending package, which would implement the details of this summer's hard-won budget accord.Close The politically explosive impeachment hearing and the possibility of impeachment and a trial aren't making the jobs of dealmakers like Lowey any easier. It's yet another layer of complications for senior lawmakers pressing not … [Read more...] about Pact reached to avert government shutdown through Dec 20
On November 4, the Trump administration formally notified the United Nations that it planned to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement on climate change, which 196 countries adopted in 2015. The pact is designed to keep global temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels in this century, and if possible, to limit the increase to 1.5°C. Boston University international relations scholar Henrik Selin explains how U.S. withdrawal will affect the prospects for avoiding the worst effects of global warming. advertisement advertisement 1. What is the process for a country to leave the Paris Agreement? President Trump announced in the summer of 2017 that he intended to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement, as he had pledged during the 2016 campaign. The agreement was adopted in 2015 and entered into international legal force on November 4, 2016. Article 28 of the agreement stipulates that a member can begin a formal … [Read more...] about The U.S. is now officially leaving the Paris climate accord: What’s next?
In the wake of the shootings in Charleston, an amazing national groundswell of support has built for removing the Confederate flags that have flown from state capitals throughout the South. Businesses like Amazon, eBay, and Walmart have banned the selling of flags and flag-related material. The country’s largest flag maker has said it will stop making the flag entirely. And guerrilla protestors around the country are starting to deface the statues honoring Confederate generals and politicians. advertisement advertisement But the reach of the Confederacy–and the almost-insane tone-deafness of organizations and politicians who celebrate its history–goes well beyond the flag and hides in other insidious ways throughout the region. Here are just a few examples: Kappa Sigma is a fraternity founded at the University of Virginia in 1869 (note, after the South had lost the Civil War). Today, it boasts more than 18,000 collegiate members and many more alumni, … [Read more...] about While We’re Doing The Flags, Here Are Some Other Confederate Things We Should Get Rid Of
If there is one thing we’ve learned in 2015, it’s that people are hungry to understand how to use their limited resources to make themselves the happiest. The answer is very clear: Spend that money on interesting experiences. Take a class, go on an adventure, see some culture. Science says these experiences will stay with you longer and do more to contribute to your long-term happiness than buying a bigger TV or some extra clothes (this is extra worth remembering around the holiday season). advertisement advertisement In a year that was often not particularly joyful, some interesting projects brought us at least a little hope and excitement. One of the world’s first vertical farms took root in Wyoming, a proposal for turning old tanker ships into housing sparked people’s imaginations, and doctors got closer to stopping aging. But what got people most excited (besides the prospect of working a six-hour day!) was getting rid of cars. A look at seven … [Read more...] about We Need More Money, Less Work, And Fewer Cars: The 15 Most Popular Stories Of 2015
Given the magnitude of the challenges that we face–think global warming and the grossly unequal sharing of prosperity–it’s not surprising that consumers, employees, and the capital markets are all pressing business to stop being so much of the problem and to start becoming more of the solution. advertisement advertisement All of which makes B Corps–some 2,600 companies certified for meeting the highest environmental and social standards–especially attractive as places to buy from, work for, and invest in. Among the biggest and best known are Patagonia, Danone North America, Laureate Education, Natura (parent of The Body Shop), Kickstarter, and Ben & Jerry’s (a subsidiary of Unilever). “When we each make small changes in our daily lives, our efforts add up to a much larger cumulative action,” declares a digital marketing campaign launched this month by B Lab, the 12-year-old nonprofit organization that administers the B Corps … [Read more...] about To B or not to B? That’s the question for companies who seek to “balance profit and purpose”