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Search Engines and Social Media Step Up for Disasters

New Orleans     It’s hard to find any good news in disasters.  The Nepal earthquake has already counted more than 4000 deaths with countless homeless and crises abounding will leave that country in recovery for years, particularly in Katmandu.  India and Chinese rescue teams were first on the scene and many are joining, though slowly it […]

Beat Goes on with Action NC

 Charlotte     Pat McCoy, the executive director of Action NC, and I visited with a class of students at Charlotte School of Law who were trying to learn the often delicate dance required of partnering with community organizations, offering stories and advice, even if perhaps not helpfully in some cases.  More fruitfully, we talked about campaigns […]

Dumpster Diving and Internal Income

New Orleans   When I’m in India the hawkers, street sellers, and even the recyclers always, and I mean always, ask me what it is like for people who are in their profession in the United States.  When I answer the hawkers for example, and say that compared to India, we have almost none, they look at […]

Payday Lending Regs, Good; Not Going Far Enough, Bad!

New Orleans      I was sitting next to an organizer from British Columbia while reading the reports on the new set of regulations being proposed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on payday lending.  We have fought payday lenders in Canada for over a decade and we’re batting over .500, but a long way from a […]

Renewable Energy Cooperatives

Gatineau         George Brown is the Ottawa ACORN pro bono lawyer, which is how I came to meet him and find myself in an interesting chat on a wide range of subjects in the lobby of the Best Western hotel in Gatineau across the river from the national capital in Ottawa in the shadow of Parliament Hill.  […]

Vancouver Rent Bank

Gatineau, Canada       There may have been snow on the ground and freezing temperatures, but the ACORN Canada staff’s spring planning and training meeting was in full bloom in Gatineau, Quebec, the sister city across the river from Ottawa, Ontario.  Several of the ACORN British Columbia organizers in their reports to start the sessions mentioned in […]