This conversation, sponsored by the Praxis Peace Institute, is Episode 8 in our podcast series. It was recorded on April 10, 2020 and covers such critical questions as:
What is the essence of money?
What are the functions of money?
Where does money come from?
How does money enter the economy?
Who controls the issuance and flow of money?
Why does total debt in the world keep growing?
Is the system of money, banking, and finance stable, fair, sustainable?
Are there better ways to “do” money?
Why have local currencies not been more successful?
Are there any success stories?
Is there a “magic formula” for making an alternative money system work?
It continues with a discussion of the history of local currency efforts in Sonoma County, California and a description of straight forward approaches to creating local liquidity that is independent of banks and conventional money.
As I’ve been saying for some time, civilization is at a major turning point. Many things need to change if we are to have the kind of world we want to live in. To make the transition gracefully, I think new structures need to be built from the bottom upward, community by community.
One of the most promising projects that is currently underway is Sonoma County GoLocal. In a recent communication, Prof. Philip Beard has provided this update.
As most of you know, I’ve been involved for the past several years in the Sonoma County GoLocal Cooperative, our regional localization initiative. The Coop’s development has been rapid and impressive. (If you like, check out our website: http://sonomacounty.golocal.coop/.) But like everybody else, we need money. I’ve applied to the Ashoka Foundation in Washington DC for one of the five $50k grants they are awarding under the rubric Powering Economic Opportunity: Create A World That Works.
I’m writing to ask your assistance with this application, if you’ve got a few spare moments. Ashoka suggests that applicants’ chances will improve if supporters go to the project website, read the application, and post their comments. If you’re interested, here’s the link that will get you to my page: http://www.changemakers.com/node/103467. My project summary will show on that page; to read the various segments of the proposal, you’ll need to hit the “read more” buttons.
Apparently you need to “log in” with Ashoka to leave comments, as you’ll find out if you hit the “discuss” and even just the “like” button. I apologize for this inconvenience, and will be doubly grateful if you decide to brave it out.
The judges start vetting the proposals on July 20, so if you want to post a comment it’ll have to be before then.
I’m urging everyone to get behind this project in whatever way you can. I have great confidence that Sonoma County GoLocal has the potential to become the kind of optimal model needed to inspire other communities and lead them onto the right path toward achieving economic democracy.–t.h.g.
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