We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Ecuador earthquake disaster relief undermined by multi-million dollar investment tribunal decision

Click here to access article by Cecilia Olivet (Transnational Institute) posted on Friends of the Earth
Today, the Ecuadorian government is required to pay $180 million to multinational oil corporation Occidental, the final payment of a total settlement of $980 million following the widely criticized decision of an Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) tribunal. Just two weeks after a major earthquake, this payment threatens to undermine Ecuador’s disaster relief efforts by financially limiting the government’s ability to rebuild severely damaged hospitals, homes and hundreds of schools.

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