Today, first of May, I would like to share a compassionate thought for all those who throughout the world are excluded from work, especially the young (15-14), which The Economist reckons there are some 300 million across the world.

Charts from_Generation jobless_The Economist_25 April 2013


Our current economic system, which my generation has cautioned or helped expand, has failed you in this respect (as well as other respects)!

Here are two lectures I recommended to my colleagues at work this morning for the first of May – they are really worth listening to as they provide some fascinating insights:

Book Discussion on Rethinking Money, 18 March 2013
World Affairs Council | Stamford, CT,
Bernard Lietaer and Jacqui Dunne talked about their book, Rethinking Money: How New Currencies Turn Scarcity into Prosperity, in which they argue that our monetary system is antiquated and that a new system of complimentary currencies could help improve the economy in our communities and states. 
This talk was hosted by the World Affairs Forum of Stamford, Connecticut.
1 hour, 13 minutes http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/Liet

Excerpts of the book at: http://www.scribd.com/doc/121760064/Rethinking-Money-How-New-Currencies-Turn-Scarcity-into-Prosperity

Book Discussion on Occupy the Economy, 12 September 2012
City Lights Bookstore
Richard Wolff and David Barsamian talked about the economic crisis and argued that it can be traced back to the 1970s, when the economic system shifted from benefiting a vast majority of Americans to one which mostly benefits only the very rich. Mr. Wolff responded to some questions submitted by members of the audience at City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco.
1 hour, 30 minutes http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/Occupyt

Professor Richard Wolff’s website:  http://rdwolff.com/

Two other interesting lecture, I have listened to in the meantime:

Book Discussion on Plutocrats, 22 October 2012
Politics and Prose Bookstore
Author Chrystia Freeland talks about her book, Plutocrats: the Rise of the New Global Super-Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else, in which she chronicles the rise of the top 0.1 percent of the global population, and the impact they have in the world. She also responded to questions from the audience.
57 minutes http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/Plutoc

Book Discussion on The Price of Inequality, 7 June 2012
Politics and Prose Bookstore
Joseph Stiglitz argues that rising inequality in the U.S. is bad for our democracy and says that we need to become a more equitable society. Professor Stiglitz responded to questions from members of the audience at Politics and Prose Bookstore in Washington, D.C.
1 hour, 9 minutes  http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/PriceofI

It is a bit depressing to note that, for the three lectures that took place at bookshops, the audience is mostly comprised of grey heads – it might not bode well for the future, methinks.

1st of May 2013_Lausanne

(Photos du défilé du 1er mai, Lausanne)

Only 700 people took part in the 1st of May procession in Lausanne on 1 May 2013 even though inequality is growing in Switzerland too (but there were some 13,000 in Zurich). Does this reflect the fact that our society has become more selfish, more turned towards self-gratification rather than communal goals as well as it has become more atomised through technology (personal entertainment, mobile telecommunications, social media, etc)?

Other entry which might be of interest