Given the incredible amount of work our body does every day and its constitutive cellular processes, it’s absolutely amazing that we don’t get cancer starting when we’re born. Find out why that is by watching this video.
Surviving and thriving is the name of the game in the animal kingdom. Predator or prey, their varying survival methods continue to baffle humankind. That can especially be said about camouflage, or…
In 2008 when the United States and most of Europe decided to bail out the banks instead of allowing them to fail, Iceland chose a different path. As their entire banking system collapsed, the small nation of 320,000 opted to forgive mortgage debt, and began rebuilding from scratch. The country isn’t out of the woods yet, but today they are politically and financially stable. The current unemployment rate is down to 5%–better than in Great Britain or the United States (both 6%), and much lower than Spain (26%), Ireland (11%), and Greece (30%). Clearly this is a multi-layered issue, and what works in one small, largely homogeneous nation might not work in a large, diverse one like the United States, but perhaps punishing–not rewarding–the people responsible for the collapse was the correct course of action after all.
Yesterday morning Henry Lee McCollum was released from prison in Raleigh, North Carolina after spending 31 years behind bars for a crime he did not commit.
In 1983 Mr. McCollum and his half-brother, Leon Brown, were coerced by police into confessing to the rape and murder of an 11-year old girl. They quickly recanted, but the conviction stuck. It took 31 years for DNA evidence to exonerate the mentally disabled brothers. In the United States, an estimated 5% of all black adult males are currently incarcerated, while less than 1% of white adult males are locked up.
Had the Center for Death Penalty Litigation, a nonprofit legal group in North Carolina, failed to take his case, Mr. McCollum would have been executed. Many argue that executing a person with a mental disability violates the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution which states that a court cannot inflict “cruel and unusual punishment.” Mentally handicapped people in the United States are regularly subjected to the death penalty, often for crimes they’re not guilty of.
Over the past several decades, the United States has seen the following trend: corporations paying lower effective taxes while individuals–making up for that revenue loss–have paid more. Add to that the fact that between 2008 and 2010, a dozen US corporations paid negative taxes while Congress cut food stamps for vulnerable Americans, and you have to wonder which “people” our politicians really seek to serve.