The legality of cannabis for general or recreational use varies from country to country.
Possession of cannabis is illegal in most countries as a result of the agreement about Indian hemp, also known as hashish, in the International Opium Convention (1925). However, many countries have decriminalized the possession of small quantities of cannabis.
Some states in the US allow use of medical cannabis in state, territorial, Indian reservation, and Federal district laws, although the use is illegal by federal law. Federal agencies claim that federal law comes first.
Black Friday used to be a one-day shopping event for many retailers, but over time, with Cyber Monday and Small Business Saturday coming into the mix, it’s become a big weekend-long shopping event.
With so much buzz around this shopping extravaganza, it’s not hard to buy into the circus of it all. You’ll make impulse purchases and fall into every retailers’ trap to get you to spend your small fortune in their stores. They’ll pull out all the stops to get you in their stores and then, well, I’m sure you know the rest.
Don’t be tempted by all the bold colors in the ads that draw you in and especially the low prices that get your attention. During this year’s biggest shopping event, be a smarter shopper by following some of these rules:
13 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE CRISIS IN PUERTO RICO
Any Latino on social media knows one thing:
There’s a crisis in Puerto Rico.
Headlines about the island’s almost decade-long recession, credit rating cuts and its residents’ mass migration into the U.S. mainland, fill Facebook newsfeeds, Tumblr dashboards and Twitter timelines alike.
It can be difficult to keep up, especially when this news involves complicated issues like taxes and investments. To help keep you in the loop, here’s 13 things on the critical matters happening right now on that tropical island just 1,150 miles from Florida’s waters.
1. Puerto Rico is struggling to emerge from its recession. While the rest of the U.S. is experiencing economic growth, La Isla del Encanto has not been able to draw itself out of a 9-year recession. The U.S. territory has a 15.4 percent unemployment rate, with per capita income around $15,200 (that’s half of Mississippi’s, the poorest state in the U.S.).
2. This harsh economy is pushing thousands off of the island every year. Puerto Rico is experiencing the largest migration wave since the 1950’s. Rampant crime and a dwindling economy have pushed so many people out of the island that, for the first time in history, there are more Puerto Ricans living in the U.S. mainland than there are on the island.
3. Economists fear that this mass migration leaves little hope for the island’s economic recovery. Orlando Sotomayor, an economist at the University of Puerto Rico, told the New York Times that “the phenomenon is highly uncommon and underscores the lack of hope that the ship can or will be righted.”
4. The Caribbean island is more than $72 billion in debt. To put that in perspective, this is the U.S.’ third-largest municipal debtor, behind California’s and New York’s, though the island is both significantly smaller and poorer than both states.
5. Another major difference: Puerto Rico, unlike U.S. cities, cannot file for bankruptcy. To restructure debts, Puerto Rico must negotiate with investors.
6. Standard & Poor’s, a U.S. financial services company, slashed Puerto Rico’s rating to B, a non-investment grade. This has essentially frozen Puerto Rico out of the bond market. Over the last few years, investment companies like AllianceBernstein have sold their Puerto Rico holdings, with others hesitant to invest without a signpost of increased revenue.
7. The recent passing of a sales-tax bill can be that sign. Unfortunately, while the 4.5 percent hike in sales tax is expected to bring in $1.2 billion in new revenue, and generate more investments for the island, it’s bad news for the people of Puerto Rico, especially the poor, who will now have to pay a whopping 11.5 percent sales tax.
8. In an effort to pay the island’s utility investors, Puerto Rico is negotiating a restructuring of its public power company. The plan, which is likely to be approved by the end of the month, would definitely increase the electric rate for the island’s residents. Critics of the overhaul, like Puerto Rico’s delegate to Congress, Pedro Pierluisi, believe the increase “will not benefit anyone.”
9. Puerto Rico’s Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla also planned to implement a $166 million cut to public university budgets, but the decision was later reversed after thousands of Puerto Rican students protested the proposal. Go, millennials!
10. However, there still remains a healthcare crisis on the island. The Center for Medicaid and Medicare services will soon execute an 11 percent cut in Medicare Advantage reimbursements, which will cost Puerto Rico’s health-care system nearly $500 million. About 60 percent of the island’s population relies on Medicare, Medicare Advantage or Medicaid to pay for their health care. Last month, the Washington Post reported that doctors practicing in Puerto Rico are forced to get by with much smaller Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates than those received by others on the continental U.S.
11. Puerto Rico’s recession has also injured the island’s housing market. According to Fox News Latino, call for sales are expected to be just 15 percent of what they were a decade ago. President of the Puerto Rico Home Builders Association (ACH), Roberto Trapaga, said “when the time comes to buy a house, people don’t have the money,” adding that banks, which have also been hit by the crisis, have tightened the requirement to obtain a mortgage loan.
12. Whether Puerto Ricans own a home or not, water-rationing measures in San Juan have left thousands of islanders without water. The measures, imposed because of an ongoing drought that has lowered Puerto Rico’s main reservoirs, have limited access to water to just every other day for more than 160,000 people living in and near the capital.
13. Good news (kinda): Puerto Rico’s tax hikes and budget cuts are expected to assuage the island’s economic woes. Writing for NPR, economic reporter Greg Allen reminds us that both New York City and Washington, D.C. saw similar fiscal problems and eventually found stability. Unfortunately, fiscal recovery for both cities also brought along with it the process of gentrification, which has displaced much of the areas’ impoverished communities of color, a fate we are already seeing in Puerto Rican barrios like Santurce.
“As it appears in …. full and total credit of information and main graphic”
Not narrowed to one category, this list contains the richest people of the entire world. This list is purely based off of net worth and only contains individuals with a net worth that exceeds $1 billion. From business tycoons to the entertainment industry, anyone is eligible to make it as long as they have the cash.
The world’s wealthiest people aren’t known for travelling by bus, but if they fancied a change of scene then the richest 85 people on the globe – who between them control as much wealth as the poorest half of the global population put together – could squeeze onto a single double-decker.
The extent to which so much global wealth has become corralled by a virtual handful of the so-called ‘global elite’ is exposed in a new report from Oxfam.
It warned that those richest 85 people across the globe share a combined wealth of £1tn, as much as the poorest 3.5 billion of the world’s population.
The “industry of death” exists in the world as many people in power live off war, Pope Francis told Italian schoolkids in the Vatican on Monday, May 11, 2015.
“Many powerful people don’t want peace because they live off war,” the Pontiff said as he met with pupils from Rome’s primary schools in the Nervi Audience Hall.
Talking to children during the audience organized by the Peace Factory Foundation, he explained that every war has the arms industry behind it.
“This is serious. Some powerful people make their living with the production of arms and sell them to one country for them to use against another country,” the Pope was cited by AGI news agency as saying.
The head of the Catholic Church labeled the arms trade “the industry of death, the greed that harms us all, the desire to have more money.”
“The economic system orbits around money and not men, women,” he told 7,000 kids present at the audience.
Despite the fact that wars “lose lives, health, education,” they are being waged to defend money and make even more profit, the Pope said.
“I remember as a young teenager, I started having the odd job here and there. Of all the monies I earned, a portion would go to my Social Security account. Up until my last day of work in February 2013, I was contributing a portion of my salary as insurance for my “golden years”. The money that is in my account is money that I saved.
There is absolutely no reason at all for ANYONE to say that this is an “entitlement” and that it has to be amended or “cut”. Now that I am in my “golden age”, it’s time to draw from my personal savings account.
You keep your greedy hands off MY social security!
Out of every paycheck I saw “OASDI” tax …. every single one. That’s my money.”