Monday, June 19, 2017

Ideas, actions, and inspiration for a better tomorrow - June 19, 2017

Taxes, Subsidies

"Properly used subsidies, can add tremendous value for society. Each federal dollar spent learning to map the human genome has returned $140 so far. The GI Bill, a subsidy to soldiers and sailors, was a major factor in America's post-War wealth creation. So were the Interstate highways, which benefit all businesses. 

Subsidies to specific businesses, however, benefit their owners. They siphon tax dollars away from public purposes for private gain."

Economy, Community

"The Culture Hub reflects the belief that every community has assets it can convert to economic opportunities to increase local wealth.

In eastern Kentucky, says Fink, those assets include individual enterprise, a strong work ethic, a bent for cooperation, and talents for both crafts and technology, such as mechanized coal mining.
Nationally recognized quilters, square dancers, and documentary filmmakers attest to these assets.

The Culture Hub is about applying those talents toward local ownership, Fink says. He contrasts that with a familiar culture in eastern Kentucky, where absentee landlords and coal companies “extract all the value out of the land and the people and ship it elsewhere,” leaving people with very little."

Education, Homelessness, Poverty 

"Positive Tomorrows is a small, privately-funded school in the heart of Oklahoma City, designed to meet the needs of homeless children. The future of these students hinges on the one constant in their lives: the school, which addresses both education and basic needs.

The educational challenges associated with homelessness are broad and extend to every corner of a child's life. Without consistent access to adequate food, shelter and safety, students are often too hungry, tired and stressed to keep up in the classroom."


"In the opinion of Daniela Rus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), however, the white cane has had its day. Dr Rus would like to replace it with a system that scans its user’s environment and communicates back to him what it sees.

Dr Rus’s device, of which she demonstrated a prototype on June 1st at the International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Singapore, consists of a camera worn on a lanyard around the neck, and a belt. A computer inside the camera creates a three-dimensional image of the area ahead of the wearer, processes it to extract relevant information, and uses the results to pass on appropriate signals via the belt."

Entertainment, Family

50 of the films children should watch before they turn 11.

Film industry experts picked the movies which most benefit a child's development and creativity.

The list, put together by education charity Into Film, also allows for the nostalgia factor when choosing which films families want to watch together.

Visit the Into Film website to download activity sheets for each movie category. 

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