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Washtenaw Women’s Court unique, effective

(04/16/14 5:23pm)

Michigan is in the top five states in the country for human trafficking, today’s “modern day slavery.” This is defined as working in the commercial sex, labor, or domestic work industries through the use of physical force, fraud, blackmail, or coercion. A recently published report by the Michigan Commission on Human Trafficking noted that, “Human trafficking is the second-largest and fastest-growing criminal industry in the world.”

Capitalism created, then spoiled prosperity

(04/17/14 3:15pm)

Over the last three centuries, capitalism has poisoned the very well of prosperity it has taken such pains to create. The genie of capitalism, aided by the Industrial Revolution, can largely be credited with moving Western societies, and eventually much of the world, out of feudalism and the Malthusian trap. Malthus, you remember, complained that humans never were able to increase our living standard through much of our existence. But capitalism’s advent increased the world’s productivity and living standard; it brought humanity ease, luxury and comfort, along with prodigious choice in products and services.

City officials don’t plan for the worst case scenario

(04/17/14 3:16pm)

The problem is city officials didn’t abide by what could clumsily be called the “What If It Goes Wrong” principle. In other words, there didn’t appear to be any consideration of the worst case scenario on the part of city officials who were in office at the time. It was all but assumed the project would be successful. It wasn’t.

What use are tools without wisdom and virtue?

(05/19/14 3:27pm)

We humans are great toolmakers. We’ve got fire, wheels and pyramids; guns, germs and steel.We’ve built railroads, airlines and instant communication, chemical warfare and atomic bombs. We can make artificial hearts, lungs and limbs; we have harnessed the elements of air, water, coal and oil to make electricity to power looms and assembly lines. We’ve even put humans on the moon.

We must take action in order to make changes

(05/26/14 9:30am)

Why is it so difficult today to mobilize American citizens for political action? We face critical issues like education and health care, poverty and mass incarceration, the worsening economic divide and possible human extinction due to climate change. Why aren’t people scrambling to vote in every election, participating in demonstrations, telling our political representatives what we want done to make society better?

Change we can believe in

(06/02/14 4:18pm)

Two of the most pressing public policy problems facing the country are soaring national debt and rampant environmental degradation. For years, solutions have proved elusive. But what if I told you that there was a way to ameliorate both of these concerns with no real cost to anyone, and make your life a little simpler to boot? The answer is straightforward: Eliminate small coins.