G20 in last week's show 

I recently spoke with Nancy Alexander who directs Economic Governance Policy for the North American office of the German Heinrich Boell Foundation. She described a new kind of deal being made by the biggest economies in the world to finance development. Ironically, this is instituting a new way of crushing those economies in a way similar to the results of the old development model. Under structural adjustment programs the World Bank imposed conditions on borrowing countries that forced them to shrink internal spending on things like agricultural extension and other infrastructure that could have supported their building wealth. This means that now private money is essential to bootstrap those countries – public-private partnerships are the only way to go. But to attract them, the new development model requires the state/the public to undertake all the financial risk -- an idea similar to the big banks bailout in the US after the 2008 financial crisis. And the private sector investment just obtains access to the benefits -- the profits. This amounts to another way to burden the public sector and diminish its effective sovereignty over resources like water and energy needed to provide for public well-being. Nancy has several pieces on this. Carbon infrastructure Case Studies


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Rodrigo's Farm 


Rodrigo Marciacq has been a successful pioneer of hydroponics in Panama for the last 15 years of his 50 years of farming.

What's For Dinner visited Rodrigo's greenhouses north of Boquete, where he raises 3/4 of an acre of hydroponic lettuces, grossing the equivalent of $250,000 per acre. After attending Texas A & M for a degree in agronomy, he worked for Chase Bank in Panama, grew coffee, and then onions, finally achieving a yield four times the average US commercial harvests, and without pesticide and herbicide use. With the kind of holistic view of farming you'd hear from a speaker at a U.S. organic farming conference, Rodrigo mentors other farmers as well as maintaining his own successful business.

he worked for Chase Bank in Panama, grew coffee, and then onions, finally achieving a yield four times the average US commercial harvests, and without pesticide and herbicide use. With the kind of holistic view of farming you'd hear from a speaker at a U.S. organic farming conference, Rodrigo mentors other farmers as well as maintaining his own successful business.


he worked for Chase Bank in Panama, grew coffee, and then onions, finally achieving a yield four times the average US commercial harvests, and without pesticide and herbicide use. With the kind of holistic view of farming you'd hear from a speaker at a U.S. organic farming conference, Rodrigo mentors other farmers as well as maintaining his own successful business.


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