Wednesday, July 17, 2019

O budismo não é fofinho

Buddhism Has Never Been Pacifistic, por Razib Khan. Já agora ver também A Radical Realist View of Tibetan Buddhism at the Rubin, por Ian Johnson.

Eu em tempos (por culpa de Aldous Huxley) cheguei a acreditar na ideia que o budismo teria sido a única religião sem guerras santas.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

A direita e a esquerda da New Age / Pensamento Positivo

Jesse Walker: "The long American spiritual tradition that gave us Marianne Williamson—and Donald Trump"

Já agora, o texto (embora só de raspão fale no assunto) faz-me pensar que nestas primárias Democratas há uma espécie de bloco pós-hippie - Sanders, Williamson e Gabbard (esta última mais por nascimento do que por escolha).

Monday, July 15, 2019

Quem tem poder para suspender a democracia parlamentar no Reino Unido? O primeiro-ministro ou a rainha?

The Queen Is the Reason Boris Johnson Would Struggle to Suspend Parliament, por Robert Hutton and Kitty Donaldson (Bloomberg):

Boris Johnson is threatening to suspend Britain’s Parliament to force through a no-deal Brexit if he becomes prime minister -- and some politicians are planning to fight him in court.

But he would face a bigger problem: Queen Elizabeth II could stop him first. (...)

The power to prorogue -- as it is formally called -- lies not with the prime minister but with the monarch. As with her other powers, it is usually deployed at the request of the prime minister. That’s why some academics, such as Vernon Bogdanor of King’s College London, think the Queen “would follow the advice of her prime minister.”

But others disagree.

“The question constitutional experts are all debating is whether the Palace could say ‘No,’” said Catherine Haddon of the Institute for Government. “It’s all something of a gray area in our system.”

Friday, July 12, 2019

Gestão democrática dos serviços públicos

We must trust the public to run their own utilities, por Gareth Thomas (deputado do Partido Trabalhista britânico):

‘We Own It’ published an interesting proposal earlier this week for the future democratic public ownership of the water industry. I share their critique of the current ownership of the industry, which is failing to invest at the speed necessary to tackle leakage. Customers currently have little power and there are few signs that the industry has grasped the scale of the climate crisis. Water bills have rocketed since privatisation, while there have been huge dividend payments to the often remote and unaccountable owners.

But I support a different method for securing genuine democratic public ownership. I want employees, John Lewi-style or consumers co-op style, to directly own the water business in their area. I don’t see why consumers should only be regularly consulted and stay once or twice removed from control of water firms.
Vagamente relacionado, um post meu de há dez anos, Os "monopólios naturais".

Friday, July 05, 2019

Declaração de interesses

Eu em princípio vou ser candidato (como penúltimo da lista dos suplentes do círculo de Faro) pelo Bloco de Esquerda às próximas eleições. Portanto, se já antes tudo o que eu escrevia tinha um claro enviesamento, agora ainda mais.

Monday, July 01, 2019

Nos EUA, 54% o crescimento da bolsa é devido a transferência de riqueza a favor das acionistas

E apenas 24% devido a crescimento da economia, e isto desde 1989:

How the Wealth Was Won: Factors Shares as Market Fundamentals, por Daniel L. Greenwald, Martin Lettau, Sydney C. Ludvigson (NBER Working Paper No. 25769, doi:10.3386/w25769):

We provide novel evidence on the driving forces behind the sharp increase in equity values over the post-war era. From the beginning of 1989 to the end of 2017, 23 trillion dollars of real equity wealth was created by the nonfinancial corporate sector. We estimate that 54% of this increase was attributable to a reallocation of rents to shareholders in a decelerating economy. Economic growth accounts for just 24%, followed by lower interest rates (11%) and a lower risk premium (11%). From 1952 to 1988 less than half as much wealth was created, but economic growth accounted for 92% of it.

Friday, June 28, 2019

A autoridade do Estado

Quer se esteja a falar do "Prédio Coutinho" ou dos imigrantes detidos nos Estados Unidos, a autoridade do Estado baseia-se em última instância no poder de recorrer à brutalidade contra quem desobedece; essa brutalidade normalmente não é usada porque as pessoas obedecem às leis, decretos, etc. sem levantar grandes problemas, mas existe sempre como pano de fundo - qualquer política do Estado tem sempre como recurso final a violência (letal, se necessário).

Isso não invalidade que se possa ser a favor de demolições de prédios, de restrições à imigração ou de qualquer outra política do Estado, mas é bom ter sempre presente que essas políticas não se implantam por geração espontânea - o punho de ferro está sempre implícito.