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March 26th, 2014
thesmithian

'There is a wave of fashionable pessimism over Latin America’s future. Expressions such as 'submerging economies' and 'the party is over' have become common in analysts’ and investors’ parlance and, while mainly applied to the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa), they have also contaminated perceptions about Latin America. This marks a major turnaround in sentiment, which not too long ago had nothing but praises for the region’s decade of stellar economic and social progress…'

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February 26th, 2014
thesmithian

'…challenging the presumption…that countries that try to reduce inequality inevitably pay a price in terms of lower growth. Once again, here is what the authors say: “We should not assume that there is a big tradeoff between redistribution and growth: the best available macro-data do not support that conclusion.”'

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February 11th, 2014
thesmithian

'Few phrases represent as big a chasm between idea and reality as “rock ‘n’ roll musician.” Even in the free-music era, we still picture, in many cases, when we think of rock ‘n’ roll, the mythological characters of the ’60s and ’70s, or even the anti-culture martyrs of the ’90s. But…what does the ceiling look like for a member of a successful indie act? A little over $100,000 a year. The floor? $435.'

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December 7th, 2013
thesmithian
Madiba has gone. What remains now of our dreams of freedom…What happened to our ethical imagination? Where did our revolution go? But let us not forget that it is a human being taking leave…A lawyer. A strategist, for sure, but a man of principle. A charmer…A humanist. A chief. A visionary. A king. We need, first of all, to bow our heads and be silent. To be proud that we could be part of those who lived at a time when Nelson Rolihlahla (“he who shakes the branches”) Mandela still walked the earth…luckily he was too old and weak to realize what his party had been turned into! Of course, he had been a politician as well. He had tasted power, he allowed himself to be manipulated, he looked the other way when his comrades started indulging in an orgy of greed, he could be arrogant…let time do the sorting out…Let us…make as if we don’t notice the vultures tearing one another apart for the strips of moral authority still to be torn from the deceased one, for the money to be made from one man’s long life of struggle on behalf of all of us. And let us spare a thought for this old warrior who made us believe, however briefly, that we are capable of living up to the good in us…He honoured us. Hamba kahle, Nkos’…
November 6th, 2013
thesmithian

If I wanted to borrow $750 for a week, I would have had to pay $225 in interest. The site said that was an annual percentage rate of more than 1,300 percent. I did not agree to take the loan.

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If I wanted to borrow $750 for a week, I would have had to pay $225 in interest. The site said that was an annual percentage rate of more than 1,300 percent. I did not agree to take the loan.

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October 10th, 2013
thesmithian

…devaluation of the kwacha currency have stoked inflation, raised the price of food for rural poor and cut into President Joyce Banda’s domestic support.

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August 8th, 2013
thesmithian

Rich investors say that it takes at least $5 million to feel wealthy, according to a new investor sentiment report from UBS. Meanwhile, two-thirds of millionaires don’t consider themselves to be wealthy. They also define being wealthy not as having a certain amount of money, but having “no financial constraints on what they do.”

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art: SGNW house, South Africa

April 25th, 2013
thesmithian
…im tired of being considered vapid for liking pop music or caring about fashion as if these things inherently lack substance or as if the things i enjoy somehow make me a lesser person…im tired of being congratulated for being thin because i can more easily fit into sample sizes from the runway…im tired of people i love betraying me so they can get credit or money…I’m sad that it’s uncool or offensive to talk about environmental or human rights issues…I’m tired of creeps on message boards discussing whether or not they’d ‘fuck’ me…I’m sad that my desire to be treated as an equal and as a human being is interpreted as hatred of men, rather than a request to be included and respected (I have four brothers and many male best friends and a dad and i promise i do not hate men at all, nor do i believe that all men are sexist or that all men behave in the ways described above)…
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culture is politics. politics is culture.
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