Daily Archives: February 2, 2009

As the bottom falls out of the economy, who do you think it crushes?

“This is a crowd that won’t scatter,” James Steele wrote in the pages of The Nation some seventy-five years ago. Early one morning in July 1933, the police had evicted John Sparanga and his family from a home on Cleveland’s east side. Sparanga had lost his job and fallen behind on mortgage payments. The bank had foreclosed. A grassroots “home defense” organization, which had managed to forestall the eviction on three occasions, put out the call, and 10,000 people — mainly working-class immigrants from Southern and Central Europe — soon gathered, withstanding wave after wave of police tear gas, clubbings and bullets, “vowing not to leave until John Sparanga [was] back in his home.”

And some version of this is happening again as we speak. Read: Resistance to Housing Foreclosures Spreads Across the Land

It only gets worse

Amazon Deforestation: Earth’s Heart and Lungs Dismembered

Brazil has historically had the distinction of serving as the world’s leader of deforestation. … during the last three decades, an annual average of 6,500 square miles of the Brazilian Amazon — an area that is greater than the size of Connecticut — has been deforested.

Satellite data indicates that the rate of Amazonian deforestation is accelerating; in some areas, the rate increased by 50 percent since last year. And with over 20 million people and 70 million cattle now inhabiting the Amazon, about a 600 percent increase in the last 60 years, more trees are being razed to make room for cattle ranches

Hat Tip: Ana