Thursday, March 31, 2016

What are libraries for anyway?

"As for Esguerra’s role, when she meets a homeless person there she does a full clinical assessment. She then presents it to her colleagues at the San Francisco homeless outreach team and they provide case management and housing.
San Francisco, which has about 6,600 homeless people, has started something of a trend.
Today, 24 public libraries provide support systems for homeless patrons, according to City Lab.
In Pima County, Arizona, for example, nurses roam the county’s 27 libraries offering blood pressure checks and identifying people in need of medical care, according to the AP.
The Queens Library in New York City connects patrons to emergency food, shelter and legal services through a mobile phone application."

My library started a Maker Space, including 3D printers and green screen for making videos. Libraries, being no longer the main place to get textual information (thanks Internet!), are looking for their major role in the community.  And what they finally settle on is whatever the community needs.  Flexibility and inventiveness are the key.  

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Can we have Nordic Utopia in the US? Yes!

"But the truth is that free-market capitalism and universal social policies go well together—this isn’t about big government, it’s about smart government. I suspect that despite Hillary Clinton’s efforts to distance herself from Sanders, she probably knows this. After all, Clinton is also endorsing policies that sound an awful lot like what the Nordics have done: paid family leave, better public schools, and affordable day care, health care and college for all.
The United States is its own country, and no one expects it to become a Nordic utopia. But Nordic countries aren’t utopias either. What they’ve done has little to do with culture, size, or homogeneity, and everything to do with figuring out how to flourish and compete in the 21st century."

Ok, not utopia.    But we CAN learn from them and implement the things that work.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Another country tries Universal Basic Income; Canada

'“As Ontario’s economy grows, the government remains committed to leaving no one behind. Maintaining an effective social safety net is one part of the government’s broader efforts to reduce poverty and ensure inclusion in communities and the economy,' Ontario’s budget statement said."

In a few years we should know how this system works.

I think back to the years when I was growing up. the plan was for robots and machines to start doing more and more of the drudgery work so humans would have more free time.  So we got the robots and machines, but the benefit went to corporations, not people.