Monday, May 6, 2019

Universal Basic Income doesn't work

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/may/06/universal-basic-income-public-realm-poverty-inequality

"Redistributing the personal tax allowance and developing the idea of universal basic services (UBS) could offer a more promising alternative. This calls for more and better quality public services that are free to those who need them, regardless of ability to pay. Healthcare and education are obvious examples, and it is argued that a similar approach should be applied to areas such as transport, housing, social care and information – everyday essentials that should be available to all."

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I'm not sure the results are all in yet, but this is a thoughtful view of the idea so far.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Building better cities, starting with privacy issues

https://www.engadget.com/2018/10/26/sidewalk-labs-ann-cavoukian-smart-city/

That wiggle room concerns Cavoukian. She believes all Quayside data should be de-identified at source to maintain citizen privacy. "The minute you say, 'well it's going to be their choice,' you can bet more and more data will be collected in personally identifiable form," she said. "Because that's the treasure trove. That's what everybody wants."

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If you know what each citizen does, such as what resources they utilize, and what routes they take, you could create a better functioning city. BUT, you could also be spying on your citizens. There's the rub.  How to collect data of a citizen's routine, but keep it private?

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

More on the need for libraries

https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2018/sep/24/palaces-for-the-people-at-the-library-everyone-is-welcome?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

"Libraries are not the kinds of institutions that most social scientists, policymakers, and community leaders usually bring up when they discuss social capital and how to build it. But they offer something for everyone, regardless of whether they’re a citizen, a permanent resident, or even a convicted felon – and all of it for free. Doing research in New York City, I learned that libraries and their social infrastructure are essential not only for a neighborhood’s vitality but also for buffering all kinds of personal problems – including isolation and loneliness."

Libraries are often seen today as unnecessary since we have the Internet now. But some people don't.  Plus there are social benefits the library affords.  But I think we need to re-think the design of libraries to update their usefulness.

Saturday, September 8, 2018

we need to keep our libraries

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/08/opinion/sunday/civil-society-library.html?smid=tw-nytopinion&smtyp=cur

"We should take heed. Today, as cities and suburbs continue to reinvent themselves, and as cynics claim that government has nothing good to contribute to that process, it’s important that institutions like libraries get the recognition they deserve. It’s worth noting that “liber,” the Latin root of the word “library,” means both “book” and “free.” Libraries stand for and exemplify something that needs defending: the public institutions that — even in an age of atomization, polarization and inequality — serve as the bedrock of civil society.
If we have any chance of rebuilding a better society, social infrastructure like the library is precisely what we need."

Libraries are changing in how they handle information. But they are still places for social interaction for everyone in a community, rich, poor, young, and old.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Solution to lack of affordable housing; non-profit housing communities

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/america-housing-crisis-living-in-vehicles_us_5b680be3e4b0fd5c73db49bf

The absence of federal support has largely left state and local governments to play catch-up, particularly in areas on the West Coast where the housing markets show few signs of cooling. Californians will vote on two bond measures in November totaling $6 billion for housing relief, along with a proposal that would give local governments more power to expand rent controls. In Berkeley specifically, voters are set to consider the city’s $135 million affordable housing bond, paid for by new taxes on property owners.
But none of these proposals offer any immediate relief for people like Whitson and Prado. “You’re really looking at 15 to 20 years for increasing that housing supply,” said Sara Kershnar, chief of staff for Berkeley Vice Mayor Charyl Davila. “In the meantime, we have to do whatever we can to not take away – and certainly not criminalize – the shelter people make for themselves.”

https://www.mercyhousing.org/facts

"We are one of the nation’s largest nonprofit affordable housing organizations with regional offices across the nation. Each region is responsible for the organization’s local real estate development, Resident Services and fundraising activities. Each office is directed by a regional board and a regional president.
Mercy Housing provides loans to community developers through Mercy Loan Fund, which has loaned $311 million that has been leveraged into $2.3 billion of affordable housing financing and 24,300 homes for 62,000 people."


I believe that non-profit communities for low-income people is a perfect solution. It reduces cost, creates a community that can cater to the renters' needs, and offers help to move up.


 

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

arms sales from the US

https://vimeo.com/279923192?quality=1080p

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

people keep working even with universal basic income: study

https://futurism.com/basic-income-part-time-work/

"The study examines the impact of the Alaska Permanent Fund, a $61-billion communal resource backed by oil, which has been running for more than 35 years. It is currently the closest thing to a UBI in the U.S. Researchers at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy analyzed the economic effect of the annual cash payments made to Alaskan residents, which have recently totaled around $2,000 per person.
The researchers found that not only did employment not decrease, but the number of people in part-time work actually increased by a significant 17 percent. And, while overall employment was reduced in fields like manufacturing and oil, it remained steady in fields like construction, education, and healthcare."

People want upward mobility, not the ability to sit on their asses all day.