NewsNotes, May-June 2010
Vol. 35, No. 3
1) Know Justice, Know Peace: Ending War at Home and Abroad: Pax Christi USA’s annual Catholic peacemaking conference will be held July 16-18 at the Rosemont Hotel O’Hare near Chicago. Keynote speakers include Rev. Bryan Massingale, STD; writer Jeremy Scahill; and Elena Segura, who serves as the director of Office for Immigrant Affairs and Immigrant Education in the Archdiocese of Chicago. Registration with meals is $200. Scholarships available.
2) Free Trade Doesn’t Work: What should replace it and why: This new book by Ian Fletcher is aimed at both ordinary citizens and people with a bit of sophistication about economics, and explains in detail why the standard economic arguments free traders use are false, and what kind of economic ideas - well within the grasp of the average reader - justify protectionism instead. It examines the history and politics of free trade and explains how the U.S. came to adopt its present disastrous free trade policy. It examines what’s wrong with NAFTA, CAFTA, the WTO, and the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership. 348 pages, $24.95. Published by the U.S. Business & Industry Council; ISBN-10: 0578048205.
3) Speaking up for Gender: A step-by-step guide to holding IFIs accountable: Published by Gender Action, this user-friendly guide provides grassroots groups and others affected by international financial institutions’ (IFI) projects with information, tips and guidelines for submitting a gender discrimination complaint to an IFI accountability mechanism. Despite having gender policies, IFIs continue to finance projects that often ignore gender inequalities and increase poverty, sex work, violence, and HIV/AIDS among women and girls. Visit Gender Action’s website to support and learn more about its work promoting gender equality and women’s rights in all IFI projects such as those of the World Bank.
4) A Harvest of Heat: Agribusiness and Climate Change: How six food industry giants are warming the planet: This report, commissioned by Agribusiness Action Initiatives (AAI) North America, is downloadable here.
5) Let There Be...Stuff?: This six-session curriculum from the creators of “The Story of Stuff” helps Christian teenagers understand the problems the planet is facing, raise awareness of the changes needed and empower them to develop environmentally sustainable patterns of consumption that honor creation and deepen their spiritual lives. It’s chock-full of hands-on exercises, thought-provoking questions and great group activities.
6) The Story of Bottled Water: Also from the makers of the Story of Stuff, this new video and website arrived on March 22, World Water Day. Available for free at www.storyofbottledwater.org, the seven-minute film and its resources employs “The Story of Stuff”-style to tell the fast-paced, fact-filled story of manufactured demand—how you get U.S. Americans to buy more than half a billion bottles of water every week when it already flows from the tap. The film explores the bottled water industry’s attacks on tap water and its use of seductive, environmental-themed advertising to cover up the mountains of plastic waste it produces. It concludes with a call to take back the tap, not only by making a personal commitment to avoid bottled water, but by supporting investments in clean, available tap water for all.