April 20 marks the unofficial high holiday of stoner culture when marijuana enthusiasts around the world celebrate the fine art of smoking pot (or eating it or vaping it or drinking it). On Jan. 1, California opened the world’s largest legal market for recreational marijuana, which is estimated to reach $5.1 billion this year.
Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer announced he plans to introduce legislation to decriminalize marijuana at the federal level. The bill would remove cannabis from the list of scheduled substances, mandate research into the drug’s effects, and establish federal authority to regulate advertising as well as funding for women and minority-owned businesses.
Starbucks, scrambling to restore trust after the arrest of two black patrons at a cafe in Philadelphia, announced that it’s going to close more than half its stores in the U.S. next month for an afternoon of racial bias training. Starbucks will shut down to train nearly 175,000 employees across U.S. stores. It booked $14 billion in sales last year across its 9,412 stores in the Americas. So calculated on a per-store basis, it generated an annual $12.2 billion from the 8,222 stores closing their doors for the afternoon in the U.S. The average per day: roughly $35.5 million.
What was once never seen in museums, now there is a scrambling rush for museums and galleries across the country to snag up pieces of black art. Wall Street elites have also joined in the craze, boosting up record prices for works of black artists, U.S. institutions are realizing their collections have largely overlooked the black figure.
Facebook just updated and expanded its data policy for the first time since late 2016. It clarifies a lot that was vague in the prior version and provides more specifics about how your data is collected, why it is stored and when it is deleted.
Scientists and agriculture-industry executives say using Crispr technology in plants could transform agriculture and help feed a growing global population. Organic farmers and natural-food companies say it may pose risks to human health and permanently alter the environment.
Sales of products made without GMOs have increased to $25.5 billion in 2017, from $349 million in 2010, according to the Non-GMO Project, a Washington state-based group that promotes and certifies foods made without genetically engineered crops.
Open Markets looks at what has gone wrong with capitalism in advanced economies—and, more importantly, what can be done about it. It focuses on three topics. The first is trade. Economists have long argued that free trade makes everyone richer. But lately that view has come under attack.
Next, competition. Capitalism works best when people and businesses compete on a level playing field. That encourages high standards and innovation.