by Susan Donderewicz: The following is a transcript of a presentation made during a meeting on community economics in Steuben County in May of 2008: I’ve been given just fifteen minutes, so I’ve narrowed my topic to the history of civilization. With a special emphasis on the future, since this is part of the progression, it just hasn’t happened yet. When I envision an economy of a particular time and place, I picture a machine, and the first place to look is how the machine is powered, what makes this economy go. The ancient Egyptians had an economy that created the pyramids, the Sphinx, all those ancient works of art. I refer to that bulwark of historical accuracy, Hollywood, for a glimpse of how that system worked. The “Ten Commandments” showed scene after scene of the masses of people working hard from dawn to dusk, their lives were nothing but endless work. I thought as I was growing up that this was because they used primitive methods to provide for their basic needs. However, during my Hippie experience, I lived off a garden using a pickaxe, cutting wood with a bow saw. It took about half a day, on the average, to fill my needs. The rest of my day was free for courses at the community college, visiting friends, etc. So why were the Egyptian masses working so hard? Where was all that effort going? The Egyptian economy was a machine shaped like a giant pyramid, with the huge majority at the bottom, a lesser number of immediate supervisors just above them, on up to a very small group at the top: a hierarchy. The people at the bottom powered the machine with that labor beyond which they performed for their own benefit, this excess they unwillingly contributed upwards through the machine to the controllers at the top. The huge amount of wealth and power wielded by the people at the top originated from the workers at the bottom. Very little benefit came back down to the workers—supervision, for sure, and police presence, quite probably. The Egyptian economy was powered by the exploitation of the masses. Continue reading

Greens warn that antiwar Americans will waste their votes if they vote for Obama, citing his positions on Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, and the Middle East

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Cynthia McKinney on Why She's Running as a Green, Economics, Health Care, and More the menu button above to bring up a menu of Continue reading

Greens, after the nomination of the McKinney-Clemente ticket at the Chicago convention, begin aggressive ballot access effort

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Green Party mourns loss of Dona Spring, Berkeley City Council member since 1992; she's called an ‘inspiration' as longest serving Green in office

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Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, in their two volumes of “Capitalism And Schizophrenia”, brought up a very important issue or question. That is, why do people desire their own repression, and how does that allow the formation of fascism. Even in democratic societies this question needs to be answered and analyzed in order to prepare humans to exist with and use free agency in opposition to the nature of structures that develop hierarchy and domination. A full understanding of how fascism occurs on the micro-level can result in a more fleshed out critique of the larger structures of power that grow from this foundation. This understanding begins with the definition of general fascism as the intersection of corporate power, militarism, and religious fundamentalism which in turn is taken apart to look at the conundrum of humans dealing with absolute determination and absolute freedom. Continue reading

Cynthia McKinney Wins Green Party Presidential Nomination

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News and highlights from the Green Party's 2008 National Convention in Chicago

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Steve Alesch, Illinois Green candidate for the US House, condemns incumbent's plan for a nuclear waste facility in a Chicago suburb

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US Greens elated, relieved at news of Colombian Green Party leader Ingrid Betancourt's rescue

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The Green Party of Hawaii has regained ballot status for the 2008 elections, after gathering more than twice the number Continue reading

Greens at the Chicago convention, July 10-13, to collect and donate items to homeless shelters

Green Party members attending the Green National Convention in Chicago, July 10-13, will bring donations for area shelters.

The 2008 Green National Convention in Chicago will highlight Illinois Greens' triumph over ballot access obstruction

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Greens at Chicago Convention will discuss impeachment, telecom immunity, and other issues on which Democrats and Republicans have violated the public trust

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San Francisco Green Party endorses Cindy Sheehan run against Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi; Greens will be strong ally in longshot bid

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When discussing sustainability, one usually thinks in terms of the environment and especially climate change and pollution. However, the principles of sustainability can be applied to economics as well. When the Green Party states that it supports community economics as part of its 10 Key Values, I propose that this is another way of describing economic sustainability. Like ecological sustainability, economic sustainability is both the decentralization of structures of control as well as an understanding that various components interact to achieve a type of dynamic equilibrium. For a community economy, this means a local democratic decision-making process and the interdependence of residents in the roles of workers, consumers, and taxpayers. The corporate model does not achieve this sustainability for the obvious reasons that corporations do not run on democratic principles either internally or externally, and that the benefits to corporations requires the disruption of the community equilibrium that results in profits taken away from the community. Community economics as economic sustainability can best be demonstrated by the existence of cooperatives, both historically and in the present situation. In fact, cooperatives can be seen as the authentic alternative to the corporate model through its democratic empowerment that was lacking in much of the Cold War debate between capitalism and communism in the last century. In other words, it can be said that cooperatives offer a real and practical solution to the question of how workers can control the means of production as an end to exploitation. I will begin with a short history of cooperatives and their principles, continue through how to grow and develop cooperatives in this county and the nation, and finish with the best way to transition existing business forms into a cooperative model. Continue reading

Greens nominate Polikoff for District 5 seat

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Green Party National Convention

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Democrats' health care reform plans are designed to satisfy corporate backers, not solve the health care crisis, say Greens

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The philosophy of Alain Badiou is vital to the political work of the Green Party in that he describes the possibility of political action in regards to the event. And it can be easily said that September 11th is an example of the event in present time. People living after this event are in a new form of reality, and must be able to understand what kind of options are possible and what can occur when there is a disruption of predictable history and meaning. In fact, a new arena of the political emerges where previous assumptions disappear and there is a need to engage in this arena to reclaim freedom and a sense of purpose. The possibility of action and control are in fact more fully displayed after the event, and to an extent everything becomes politically important. Continue reading