Thoroughly Thursday - the "Silver Lining" Edition
Welcome back to Thoroughly Thursday, the Silver Lining edition. Though I like to think I have a pretty even temperament (except when my daughters leave towels on the floor), lately current events have been freaking me out. It's hard not to think about the future without feeling a certain level foreboding (and not just because it is almost Halloween). The UN Climate Change Report that was released a few weeks ago was undeniably scary. A future scenario that many thought might only impact our great-grandchildren has suddenly appeared on our doorstep.
Global climate change will require ALL OF HUMANITY to work together to solve. And, yes, this seems daunting in our current culture. However, I think it's important to consider the opportunities that come with such a challenge. Aside from the great leaps in environmental science and potential technological advances that would be a part of any effort, combating climate change will require countries to pull even more of the world out of poverty, improve education and social welfare, and fight for social justice. It will be hard, but we can do this.
What I'm Reading (article) - The Best Thing You Can Do for the Environment
While researching for this week's edition, I came across "The Big Lie We’re Told About Climate Change Is That It’s Our Own Fault" by Mary Annaise Heglar. Per Heglar, the issue is not about our individual energy consumption, but rather how that energy is produced. The UN Climate Report showed that just 100 companies are responsible for 71% of global emissions. However, as an individual, the best thing you can do for the environment is changing what you eat. By giving up meat and dairy products, the University of Oxford states that an individual can reduce their carbon footprint by 73%. It beats sitting in the dark.
What I'm Listening to - Chatting Finance with the Cool Kids
I usually don't listen to very many financial podcasts, but I have to admit that I enjoy the Indicator from Planet Money. Often only about 10min per episode, the show is a fun, lively discussion on business, social dynamics, and economic trends. Recent topics include how robots could take 50% of the jobs in the next six years, the economics of saying sorry, and my personal favorite, the national budget explained in 10 minutes (which was hilarious).
What I'm Reading - A Brave New Digital World
This last week I've been reading Information Doesn't Want to be Free by Cory Doctorow. IDWTBF is less a book and more like a long essay on the changing face of creativity and intellectual property in the Digital Age. Doctorow argues that as creative content has moved from physical to digital versions (i.e., the book to ebook), the big losers are not artists but the owners of the previous distribution systems who continue to desperately put up locks, gates, and paywalls to protect their financial positions, usually at the cost to their talent. To succeed, artists are increasingly moving to more direct relationships with fans through social media, events, merchandising, and patronage. Excuse me as I go and work on a series of TT T-shirts which will be shortly on sale in time for the Holidays.
All the best, and remember, tomorrow is Friday. :)
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P.S. I'm always on the lookout for new items to write about. If you notice something that you think would be worth sharing, send it my way.