The New Passport-Poor

Drawing borders around people might give us a more orderly and predictable world. But for all the promised benefits of a frictionless experience of journeying, it may not be a more humane one.

Published: May 21, 2018
Length: 10 minutes (2,652 words)

How a Tax Haven is Leading the Race to Privatize Space

Luxembourg is a small but savvy nation. With few natural resources — besides a long line of grand dukes, a legacy of skirting tax loopholes, and a valuable national sovereignty — the country has looked to the stars for its next big venture: asteroid mining. The only problem? The 1967 Outer Space Treat explicitly prohibits countries from claiming ownership of any object in space, including asteroids.

Source: The Guardian
Published: Sep 15, 2017
Length: 21 minutes (5,300 words)

The ‘I’ in Union

The origins and the politics of the New York-based Freelancers Union—now 150,000 members strong:

“The shift toward short-term contracts was underway long before the 2008 financial crash. Charles Heckscher, director of the Center for Workplace Transformation at Rutgers University, sits on the board of the Freelancers Union, and likes to describe this shift in terms of ‘flexibility.’ As the economy shifted away from manufacturing jobs and toward knowledge- and tech-based ones, he argues, ‘companies have clearly and widely moved away from taking responsibility for long-term careers. These certainly include crude cost-cutting considerations, but they also reflect the deeper economic changes…with skills and demand metamorphosing so rapidly in so many domains, it is often more effective to look for those with needed skills on the open market rather than developing them internally. Once companies begin to do that, they tend to break the whole pattern of expectations and commitments which grounded the classic system.'”

Source: Dissent
Published: Jan 4, 2012
Length: 14 minutes (3,701 words)