In the predominantly Kurdish regions of Syria and Turkey, known respectively as Rojava and North Kurdistan, a groundbreaking experiment in communal living, social justice, and ecological vitality is taking place. Devastated by civil war, the Middle East is often seen as a place where little more than a cessation of hostilities can be hoped for. But Rojava and North Kurdistan have set their sights much higher. What started as a movement for political autonomy has blossomed into an attempt to build a radical pluralist democracy on the principles of communal solidarity — with food security, equality for women, and a localized, anti-capitalist economy at its core.
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Less of What We Don't Need
Stories about Less of What We Don't Need.
The White European conspiratorial model of constant, unbridled growth and expansion, vigorously exported and aggressively promoted throughout the New World, is a form of sheer madness: mentally, culturally and spiritually. It knows no allegiance to any one country, people or way of life other than to growth and expansion for their own sake and the aggrandizement of but a few. It’s conspiratorial world view refuses to debate how much human societies are hopelessly growing out-of-control, and instead prefers to focus everyone’s attention on how to perpetually cope with the out-of-control growth; which, of course, no one ever can because it’s essentially a hopeless endeavour. It refuses to debate the inherent fatal flaw that exists within the ever-growing density of all its major urban centre, and instead only asks the question, “How dense should the world’s urban centres get before they spread ever outward until they become massive, inter-connected entities of unimaginable size, density and complexity.
Tucked within the pages of the January issue of the Agriview, a monthly farm publication published by the State of Vermont, was a short survey from the Department of Public Service (DPS). Described as an aid to the Department in drafting their “Ten Year Telecom Plan”, the survey contains eight questions, the first seven of which are simple multiple-choice queries about current internet and cell phone service at the respondent’s farm. The final question is the one that caught my eye:
“In what ways could your agriculture business be improved with better access to cell signal or higher speed internet service?”
Two things are immediately revealed by this question
Why do degrowth scholars use the word “decolonise” to discuss the process of changing the growth imaginary? Isn’t decolonisation about undoing the historical colonisation of land, languages and minds? How do these two uses of the word relate?
This blog post is the result from a discussion held between some participants at a Degrowth Summer School in August 2017. While some parts of this blog post are written to confront degrowth theory, we took the time to write up the discussions around the word “decolonise” because we think of degrowth as a project worth supporting and a community who is open to reflection. We recognise degrowth is an important academic and activist movement, which correctly diagnoses economic growth as a root cause of social and ecological crisis. We would like to see degrowth concepts spread. However, we have a problem with the use of the term decolonisation within degrowth literature.
Three California courts have ruled three giant paint companies knowingly promoted a toxic product that has poisoned thousands of children and ordered them to clean it up. The paint companies have a cynical scheme to get Californians to pay the bill.
On February 14, the Supreme Court of California declined to review a multimillion-dollar state appeals court ruling against three of this country’s largest paint manufacturers and, predictably, their attorneys immediately pledged to take their case to the U.S. Supreme Court. But, the giant paint companies had already launched a plan to get much quicker relief; they are going to purchase an election.
|Picture: Ann-Helen Meyer von Bremen|
A march against Shell and Exxon’s gas drilling drew thousands in the northern Dutch city of Groningen on Jan. 19, after a heavy earthquake rocked the region earlier this month.
Ten thousand people — a record number for Groningen — marched through the city with torches and chanted slogans scolding the government, as well as its partners Shell and Exxon, for the gas operations they say are responsible for the 3.4 magnitude earthquake felt throughout the province on Jan. 8.
Kim Konte certainly thought so. Kim was one of the organizers of Non Toxic Irvine which convinced the City of Irvine to adopt an organic-first policy in landscaping (http://www.nontoxicirvine.org/). “Baseball is my children’s life,” Komte said, “and we want to make sure every baseball player is able to slam into the dirt and roll around in the grass and not be exposed to carcinogenic chemicals.”
For many, cooperatives represent the past, not the future. But young people around the globe are challenging that notion. At the International Cooperative Alliance Conference, held in November in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, members of the Youth Network, a multilingual, diverse, global initiative to connect and empower youth to join and create cooperatives around the world, spoke passionately about why it is imperative to invest in a youth-driven cooperative future. The role of young people is crucial to the future of cooperatives, which are being increasingly seen as critical to not only addressing income inequality, but meeting sustainable development goals.