A blog highlighting solidarity economy experiences and case studies
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Michael A. Lebowitz. Built It Now: Socialism for the 21st Century. Monthly Review Press, 2000.

A book review by Frank Lindenfeld

What would a humanist, participatory "socialism for the 21st century" look like? In this short book, Michael Lebowitz shares his vision and asserts that the Chavez administration has embarked on transforming Venezuela into such a society through its Bolivarian Revolution.

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By Rob Brown, IHA office manager, and Bethany Schroeder, IHA board president

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By John Zippert, Federation of Souther Cooperatives

From August 16-18, 2007, the Federation of Southern Cooperatives/Land Assistance Fund will celebrate its fortieth (40th) anniversary and Annual Meeting. Growing from 22 cooperatives and credit unions organized by SNCC, CORE, SCLC and other civil rights organizations in the South in the 1960's, the Federation has worked with thousands of Black farmers and other low income rural folks over the past four decades.

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By Len Krimerman and Bob Stone, GEO Collective

LEN: As folks head towards the very first US Social Forum in Atlanta questions arise: other than convening a rich mosaic of progressive organizations and activists, does the social forum movement have a mission to bring about "another world," and, if not, should it now adopt a strategy for doing so?

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Interview by Jessica Gordon Nembhard

Shakoor Aljuwani is an organizer with the Home Coming Center in New Orleans. GEO Newsletter's Jessica Gordon Nembhard interviewed him in April 2007 about his work and progress with helping low-income residents return to New Orleans and rebuild their homes and neighborhoods.

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By Matt Feinstein

For a total of twelve months between 2003 and 2005, I lived and worked with the Unemployed Workers' Movement of Solano (MTD-Solano) in Buenos Aires, Argentina. It was an experience that fundamentally changed the way I think about community organizing and activism; I continue to search for ways to put those ideas into practice. This article is an attempt to share these experiences, and to let you know about a new video-workshop tool that aims to deepen the exchange between organizers around the world.

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By Naomi Klein and Avi Lewis

On March 19, 2003, we were on the roof of the Zanon ceramic tile factory, filming an interview with Cepillo. He was showing us how the workers fended off eviction by armed police, defending their democratic workplace with slingshots and the little ceramic balls normally used to pound the Patagonian clay into raw material for tiles. His aim was impressive. It was the day the bombs started falling on Baghdad.

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By Robert C. Marshall

As the baby boom ages into the elder explosion in the world's industrial nations, more and more innovative solutions will appear in the effort to provide seniors with the many sorts of care they deserve and to which they are entitled.

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(adapted from stories in the Alexandria Times, and The Examiner -Eds.)

"Alexandria's taxi monopoly has been broken," said Syed Hussain, a driver and president of Alexandria Union Taxicab Company, a cooperative cab service owned and operated by its drivers. The worker-cooperative opened for business earlier this year seven miles south of Washington, D.C. The co-op operates 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

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By Mary Hoyer, ECWD Lead Organizer

For the first time since its inception in 2002, the Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy (ECWD) will be held in the South. The 2007 regional conference will be co-hosted by the Federation of Southern Co-ops/Land Assistance Fund (FSC/LAF) and the Southern Appalachian Center for Cooperative Ownership (SACCO).

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By Robin Hahnel

Worker-owned cooperatives are wonderful alternatives to privately owned, capitalist firms. Workers can decide what they want to produce and how they want to produce it instead of having all that decided by their employers. In other words, workers can take control of their laboring capacities and use them as they see fit. Moreover, whatever benefits come from their efforts belong to them, not to an absentee owner who did none of the work.

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For more than twenty years, the Grassroots Economic Organizing (GEO) Newsletter (called "Changing Work" from 1984-1991) has published news and analysis of global efforts to build a democratic and cooperative economy. In 2007, we decided to move from a printed format (with a supplemental website) to a fully-online web publication. Welcome to the new GEO Online!

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By Maria Trigona

Inside the BAUEN Hotel, one of Argentina's worker-run workplaces, janitors, repairmen, receptionists and maids sit in an assembly with worried but determined faces and sheets of paper in hand. Each of the workers, some of whom have been working at the hotel since it was built in 1978, hold a court ordered eviction notice, a judicial document notifying the workers they must abandon the hotel or police will force them to leave.

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By Betsy Bowman & Bob Stone, GEO Collective

This Occasional Paper by editor/activists at Grassroots Economic Organizing is meant to stimulate dialog on the future of the grassroots economic democracy movement. This is a fully re-written update of an essay available since 1994 to GEO readers. We hope for wide use of this text, with attribution to the authors and GEO. Please email us with ideas/dialogue.

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By Betsy Bowman and Bob Stone, GEO Collective

The 6th World Social Forum held January 24th to 29th in Caracas was the highlight of our recent tour of newly democratized enterprises in Argentina, Brazil and Venezuela. We had been to the first regional social forum, the European Social Forum, in 2002. Our first World Social Forum was at once festival and oversized university, all aspiring to be the "world parliament in exile." We made our way to many stuffy rooms around town, some calmed by academics, others apulse with the energy of pioneers.

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By John Teta Luhman, University of New England (Dept. of Business Administration)

What an incredible experience! To spend a weekend in New York City attending the first membership meeting of the U.S. Federation of Worker Cooperatives, getting to know people from all around the country and the world while learning about the strength and vibrancy of the worker cooperative movement. As I reflected on my time at the conference, I kept returning to three questions that I heard again and again from participants.

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Yes! Magazine, Winter 2008 Issue
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