- Series: Global Issues Series
The Need for a New Agriculture
What kind of agriculture do we need to feed the world? World leaders have come up with yet another target-to half, not end, hunger by the year 2015. How is this to be achieved when other such targets were ignored? And what about animal diseases like BSE, foot and mouth disease and salmonella; declining food variety and quality; and disappearing topsoil, hedgerows and biodiversity in rural areas? Better acces to land and more equitable income distribution are part of the solution. The other is to move away from monoculture production system monopolized by a handful of giant corporations. John Madeley argues for the spread of a low-external input approach, a reintegration of traditional farming techniques, new farming practices like organic agriculture and permaculture, and a range of ‘green’ technologies to offer a more viable livelihood too farmers, food for the hungry, and safe and good tasting food for the rest of us.
Prejudice Versus Reality
This short and accessible rebuts the misconceptions about Islam articulated by many European intellectuals down the centuries. For non-Muslims these still obstruct a clear understanding of both the nature of Islam and the history of Christian/Muslim interactions. Th eauthor demonstrates the very recent politically motivated abd theologically dubious nature of the assertions of so-called Islamic fundamentalist movements. He contrasts them with sociall y progressive Muslim thinkers who have sought to address the inescapable questions of the modern world.
The United States and the World since 9/11
Another America Century? is a sweeping and penetrating study of the United States since the end of the Cold War. Nicholas Guyatt reveals the economic, diplomatic and military dimensions of American foreign policy and investigates what Americans say and believe about their relationship with the rest of the world. A major new chapter discusses September 11th, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the motives and ideas behind America’s “war on terror.”
Alternatives to a Bankrupt World Order
Harry Shutt argues our world is coming under threat from forces that the ruling elite is increasingly unable to control. Our present economic system is inherently unstable and heading not just for recession, but very serious breakdown. And US domination of international politics cannot last in an age where democracy and respect for human rights are demanded and where marginalization of most of the world’s people is no longer acceptable.
Understanding Intellectual Property Rights
Intellectual property rights, TRIPS, patents-they sound technical, even boring. Yet what kinds of ideas, technologies, identification of genes, even manipulations of life forms can be owned and exploited for profit by giant corporations is a vital issue for our times. Vandana Shiva shows how the Western-inspired and unprecedented widening of the concept of intellectual property does not stimulate human creativity and the generation of knowledge. Instead, it is being exploited by transnational corporations and used to increase their profits. This is done at the expense of the health of ordinary people especially the poor, and the age-old knowledge of the world’s farmers. Intellectual protection is being transformed into corporate plunder. Little wonder popular resistance is rising around the world to the World Trade Organisation, the group that polices this new intellectual world order, and the pharmaceutical, biotech and other dominate corporations. This resistance is also being directed towards the new technologies foisted upon us.
What to do about Global Warming?
Heat waves in Delhi and Athens. Hurricane Mitch in Central America and Tornadoes in the USA. Floods in Britatin and China. All unprecedented in severity, unprecedented in frequency. What is happenning to the world’s weather? This book takes us through the science, and behind the politics, to explore a number of questions.
Arguments for a World Water Contract
In 20 years time, some three of the eight billion people on earth will, if present trends continue, lack access to sufficient drinkable water. Already, half that number do not and another two billion lack clean water generally. The rest of humanity faces a degradation in fresh water quality. And there is no body of international law regulating the right and access to fresh water supplies. Ricardo Petrella exposes how corporate interests prevent an adequate response, and a market-oriented system that sees water as a commodity rather than a precious resource and fundamental human right. He calls for a world water contract to enshrine fresh water as an essential good. It should be controlled by communities in the public interest, and with international rules for equitable management and distribution.
The Non-Viable Economies of the 21st Century
Be intellectually honest and politically realistic about what is happening to the majority of people in Third World countries. With a very few exceptions, development has not come. Nor is it going to. The necessary investment will not be available. Modern technology cannot provide the jobs. And the environment cannot take the strain. Most countries are not in the process of becoming Newly Industrialized Countries, but Non-viable National Economies.What then is to be done? The wealth of nations agenda must be replaced by a survival of nations agenda. To prevent increasing disorders, many countries will have to abandon dreams of development and adopt instead a policy of national survival based on the search for water, food and energy security and the stabilization of their populations.
Critical Issues and Policy Choices
Not pessimism, but optimism in action. What can Third World governments do in the face of the globalization juggernaut? Martin Khor sets out practical proposals for action nationally and internationally to shape globalization. His book explains the economic globalization process; shows how globalization is failing to reduce poverty; criticises the West for dominating international policy; exposes the flaws in ‘one size fits all’ policy prescriptions; argues that the South must be given room for manoeuvre; and proposes innovative and realistic policies for the South. He concludes that the whole prospect of rapid, just and diversified development in the South, on which prosperity, an end to mass poverty and the future of the environment, all depend, is at stake.
Does Trade Help or Hinder Food Security?
The WTO agreement on Agriculture will be reviewed beginning in the year 2000. This begs some basic questions: Will free trade in food help or hinder the ability of hundreds of millions of poor people who are currently malnourished? Or will it chiefly benefit transnational corporations? Will free trade help huge numbers of small farmers find new markets in the North? Or will it in fact eliminate them even from the marketplace in their own countries as cheap, subsidized food from the North floods the countries of the South? Is it really irrational for countries -North and South, rich and poor-to protect their rural communities and farmers, and ensure significant self-sufficiency in food production?