Whilst the Group of Eight and the World Trade Organization chatter away to little effect, and Bill Gates ponders how to tweak capitalism so that the "one billion people [who] live on less than a dollar a day" can benefit from it, you may be wondering if there isn't a better way to organize society. In the 20th century the alternative most often put forward was communism. That doesn't seem to have worked out terribly well either though.
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Pope Benedict XVI arrived in Australia on Sunday after a flight from the Vatican that lasted over 20 hours. Having rested for three days he gave his first public address at the World Youth Day festival in Sydney earlier today. According to UK newspaper the Daily Telegraph, Pope Benedict used his speech to urge the 150,000 pilgrims gathered around Sydney harbour, and Catholics around the world, to work harder to protect the planet:
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This weeks European edition of Fortune Magazine contains interesting articles on the "Solar Gold Rush" in the Southwestern United States and the chequered history of the Tesla electric supercar.
Even more interesting, to me at least, was the fact that included inside the see through wrapping was a copy of "The Mini Rough Guide to Energy and our Planet", sponsored by big oil company Shell. The foreword is written by Jeremy Bentham, who used to be head of hydrogen at Shell, but now bears the title of "Chief Scenarios Developer". Jeremy outlines two possible scenarios Shell use in their strategic planning. In the first, codenamed "Scramble":
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Yesterday afternoon United States President George W. Bush lifted the executive ban on drilling for oil on the Outer Continental Shelf, which was signed by the first President Bush in 1990. Here's the video:
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This week's issue of the Economist magazine contains their verdict on the G8 summit in Japan – They came, they jawed, they failed to conquer.
On the positive side the Japanese hosts managed to get most of the world's greenhouse-gas emitters around a table together. The attendees included the G8, plus the so called G5 which consists of Brazil, China, India, Mexico and South Africa. Also present were Australia, Indonesia and South Korea.
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