Global Inequality and Its Ills

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Economics, People Systems, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Village Development.

Inequality is bad for most people not just the poor, bad for business and political stability; and it can be cured. by Prof Peter Saunders Two recent books deal with inequality and some of the myths surrounding it (see ISIS reviews, SiS 63). In Capital in the Twenty-first Century [1], the French economist Thomas Piketty… Read more »

Simon Anholt: Which Country Does the Most Good for the World? (TED video)

Posted by & filed under People Systems, Society.

It’s an unexpected side effect of globalization: problems that once would have stayed local—say, a bank lending out too much money—now have consequences worldwide. But still, countries operate independently, as if alone on the planet. Policy advisor Simon Anholt has dreamed up an unusual scale to get governments thinking outwardly: The Good Country Index. In… Read more »

Commons Way of Life vs. Market Way of Life

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Consumerism, Economics, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

by Silke Helfrich The market has always been with us. What’s new about life in the last three hundred years — and especially the last thirty — is that the buying and selling of goods is the overriding goal of human civilization. The market is seen not just as an efficient way to do some… Read more »

Ecuador Takes First Step Toward a Commons Economy

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

Government sponsors research on how to transition to commoning and open networks. by David Bollier A child during a parade in Ecuador by mavik2007, Flickr Creative Commons In 2013, the government of Ecuador launched a major strategic research project to “fundamentally re-imagine Ecuador” based on the principles of open networks, peer production and commoning.  Michel… Read more »

The Promise of the Commons

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Economics, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

Regular readers may remember an article I posted back in 2010 — Kings, Conquerors, Capitalism and Resilience Lost — where I covered a little historical ground for one particular former ‘East Bloc’ country; a history shared by several countries in central Europe. The article outlined how previously resilient land-based communities — which had lived and… Read more »

How a Commons Way of Life Helps Curb Climate Change

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Economics, Global Warming/Climate Change, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

It offers an appealing alternative to more stuff and more money, which drives environmental destruction today. It’s easy to not think about the looming climate crisis. For one thing, it’s depressing to ponder the misery ahead if we don’t take drastic steps now to curb greenhouse emissions. It’s even more depressing when you consider that… Read more »

This Collapse is a ‘Crisis of Bigness’

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Economics, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

Living through a collapse is a curious experience. Perhaps the most curious part is that nobody wants to admit it’s a collapse. by Paul Kingsnorth The results of half a century of debt-fuelled “growth” are becoming impossible to convincingly deny, but even as economies and certainties crumble, our appointed leaders bravely hold the line. No… Read more »

Designing Authentic Community

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Eco-Villages, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

Humankind can never do the important work of re-designing our agricultural systems on a community scale with dysfunctional and alienated communities. This is the core wisdom of permaculture: permanent (i.e. stable) culture for permanent agriculture. But, we need to re-design these systems as soon as possible, because our unsustainable and unstable reality is catching up… Read more »

Permaculture Explains the Political Control Matrix, and the Solutions – Part 1

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

by Peter Greg The idea of how Permaculture parallels with politics has been a question that has been stuck in my mind for weeks now, and I’ve been fascinated with the idea of how we can use Permaculture to recover some of our political power. The more you look into politics in the modern day… Read more »