Posts tagged economy

Green America’s Solutions from the Green Economy

I haven’t written much about the national economic situation, stimulus package, solutions, etc. so I’ll let Alisa Gravitz of Green America (formerly named Co-op America) do it for me for today! Read Green America’s Solutions from the Green Economy.

Green America focuses on increasing investment in clean tech and building local economy. Good things indeed, and an important way to channel money in the right direction. They don’t delve much into the currency-less community-building environment. Community to them seems to mean spend local, and not so much on spending nothing. Localizing economy is a good thing, but more importantly, demonetizing your transactions is a great practice to develop – and get used to – especially as belts everywhere tighten.

Host a potluck. Grow food together. Guess what, now’s the time to start community gardens and gardening with your neighbors and friends. And installing rain barrels. For free. You’ll need food and water before you need a Prius. Trust me.

Advertisements

Leave a comment »

Rewriting the program of America’s economy: speculations on the long-term inefficacy of the Obama stimulus plan

There’s no shortage of perspectives on the state of the economy and proposals for the federal stimulus plan. I don’t claim to be an economist, but I’m an American and I have an opinion. And a blog. Watch me go.

I’m not clear whether Facebook is an enhancement or a detriment to my life. I might be causing myself undue stress reading popular analyses of our bad-weather economy. I’m not sure it’s a good idea to give Robert Kuttner’s article on the Obama stimulus plan any further airplay, because it’s conventional economy version 1.0 dressed up as a progressive 2.0 version – or perhaps just 1.4 or 1.5. Anyway, his article is here: http://tinyurl.com/85vwo4

Below is the comment I posted to his article. As with all reader comments on the Internet, they’ll fade into obscurity in about 3.7 minutes. Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment »

Sustainable Economic Development and Policy. Where do communities fit in?

What are the biggest needs and gaps in business and economic development policy, here in Portland, in the state of Oregon (quite a different industrial base on the whole than Portland’s entrepreneurial and small business enterprise)? I see a need to engage groups of small businesses around sustainability, and to refocus policy, investment, and capital on building community and community-scale resources (i.e. vs. the standard model of individual, competitive businesses). There are so many discussions happening among neighborhood groups, non-profits, business alliances, and non-profits about community building as a response to economic downturn, and creating new and non-monetary means of exchange. Where does that leave local and state economic development agencies in the long term? Or even the short term, as communities move further away from conventional economic development models and create new localized economies of exchange? The challenge for the state may not be as much in raising and distributing capital as it will be adapting and responding to what communities create in response to the economic downturn/crisis that could make large-scale economic development efforts less relevant. Maybe I’m not entirely on target and/or missing a key piece of this puzzle (quite likely!), but it’s an interesting and active conversation in Portland right now. Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment »

Portland Community Building Events and Conversations

I’m amazed – and excited – by the abundance of conversations and convocations happening in Portland right now about creating community, extracting ourselves from the decaying economic paradigm, sharing resources, preparing for even tougher times, and supporting each other. Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment »

Funding Sustainability: How competition is sinking environmental and social advocacy organizations

I recently did some writing for a client about how non-profit organizations fail to achieve sweeping societal and environmental change because they are structurally embedded in systems that operate very inefficiently, systems that perpetuate the cultural “software” of competition. The title of this blog posting captures two areas where that software fails to produce sustainable outcomes: in funding sustainability efforts, and in what I call fellowship, or organizational collaboration, which I’ll explain below.
Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment »

Inaugural Blog: Building Sustainable Communities

Welcome to the season of inaugurations! Having just started a New Year, attended the induction of Portland’s new Mayor, and preparing for celebrations of a new President, I find myself caught up in the “start fresh”ness of the Internet. I just joined Facebook (as though I had been hiding under a rock), and am now starting a blog. What could be happening here? I’m realizing the value of communicating ideas, both personal and professional, with someone or something other than my living room wall.This blog is about building sustainable communities. In my worldview du jour, developing the skills and capacities to live in community and shifting to a collaborative orientation (vs. the competitive economic model in which we are presently steeped) are essential to our thriving in these difficult times. This blog is an exploration of the means and methods by which we get there, how I am contributing, asking questions about what I don’t know, and clearing the abundance of ideas in my mind out onto electronic paper, not only for others to read and comment but also to free up space for new creations and to put forward movement behind what I am creating in the world.
Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment »