With thanks from our Friends at Earth Family Alpha:
One Flower at a Time
As the news and most bloggers become totally engrossed with the process of selecting the next big kahoona, I received a small check in the mail which reminded me of the original thesis of this blog.
It was a check from my food co-op.
It says, “due to our successful operations this year, the board of directors has authorized a refund of part of our net savings to qualifying member patrons. This check represents a refund of approximately 1.02% of your purchases during the year. This 20% of the total amount allocated in your name, with 80% retained by the co-op to help fund our expansion project. Assuming your purchases were for personal,living, or family expenses, this rebate is not subject to federal income tax.
“Please Cash this Check” and if desired, you can use it on your next shopping trip to the Co-op.
My rebate check is for 12 dollars and 80 cents.
And in all fairness, the 20% return is a pretty good return on my modest investment, not to mention the reductions I enjoyed in all my purchases.
The co-op movement is still very much alive. I also get a small check from my electric co-op membership for my house in the country. In many parts of the country, these electric coops are very important chunks of the electrical infrastructure. In farming areas, large growers band together to own the cotton gin or the grain elevator. Many of these coops such as Pedernales Electric Coop , are large enterprises.
Certainly these organizations can be and often are controlled by a small clique of insiders, but the by-laws and articles of the organization, much like our constitution, are generally inherently democratic.
I started this blog after the Kerry defeat because I felt it was time for us to quit falling for the veneer of democracy that we always fall for every four years. I urged us all to reconsider the amount of energy and money that we invest into a system that has become corrupted and a dangerous diversion from the real work at hand. I urged us all to grow out of our nationalistic tribal cocoons and to emerge as global citizens.
I spoke of giant cyber-coops and of great global aggregations of people and ideas and access. I argued and visioned that someday, in the not so distant future, we would begin to form new inventions of social contract between ourselves and our distant friends and colleagues in cyberspace.
I reasoned that as the world begins to truly grapple with the great issues of the day, that we would do ourselves well by uniting with others in cooperation, rather than counting on the dated idea that competition will most fairly allocate the resources we will seek and require.
True, competition is a pretty good idea in times of wide open spaces, unlimited resources, and a level playing field. But today, we as individuals must compete against the greatest creatures of capital and control that have ever walked on the earth…the multinational corporation. Meanwhile, our finite resources are now recognized to be just that, finite, and our open space is now full of oxydized climate altering carbon.
But don’t fool yourself, the next president (of either party) will represent these corporate leviathons, not the consumers that dutifully stood in the cold and suffered the long lines, and the endless claims of change for a change.
And so now, it is that time again. We are all caught up in the drama. We watch the debates and the returns like a bowl game. We convince ourselves that all we need is a great leader, one who will end the domination of these giant leviathons of wealth.
When, in fact, all we really need is each other cooperating together.
We must flip the system.
Instead of a world of Multinational Corporations and Consumers.
We need a world of Multinational Cooperations and Providers.
Power does not give of itself naturally.
It does not volunteer to distribute itself.
It can be overtaken violently,
or it can be undertaken quietly, steadfastly, bit by bit,
family by family,
one flower at a time.