Sunday, June 15, 2008

Community Economies

On Wednesday, June 25 at 6:00 p.m. a study/discussion group will start to meet and read about community economies, namely the idea of releasing capital, labor and land from the commodity brand it has long held in our country. These group will meet (after reading short and long essays, watching videos, listening to audio recordings beforehand) one evening a month, alternating between Mockingbird Cafe (Uptown) and Fair Grinds Coffeehouse (Downtown).
The readings are found on and will be agreed upon at the end of the previous month's meeting, with the choice(s) posted here.
Some of the discussions will center around:
Locally produced and circulated currencies have allowed bioregions to start to measure their own impact and realize their own power to make decisions. This group will study some recent success of local currencies and start to discuss ways New Orleans can add a multi-level currency of its own.
Land for farming and land for rebuilding. New Orleans has both, but very little of it has moved to those citizens who truly need it. Why is that, and is land reform necessary to truly make New Orleans thrive again?
With disaster capitalism, comes cheap labor. Migrants and immigrants flow into the cities that have immediate construction and service jobs and are so desperate for workers, very little is asked, or offered. How do we transform the energy of the new residents and also find jobs for long underemployed?

Writers such as Jane Jacobs, E.F. Schumacher, Peter Berg, Ralph Borsodi and many more have long argued that the current national economy is out of scale and out of touch. Recent financial scares have turned people's attention to the very real need of defining regional answers, and we will study those writers' ideas and host local discussions with our own visionaries and practical activists to see if the answers can help.
For more information, email

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