Envisioning a convivial post-corporate world requires a diversity of new/old concepts, policies, technologies, best practices, etc. that are imaginable or currently available for decentralized implementation.

This blog is intended to collate promising contributions to this vision from experts in many fields.

Participants are requested to classify each of their posts with one or more of the Category Labels (listed here).

December 12, 2011

The "BELITTLE BIG BODIES" Banzai


A Yearend OWS Salute and Immune Key to 2012

by W. David Kubiak

Yes, Virginia, there really are silver bullets and here’s a sterling one for you.

After a lifetime clashing with monstrous corporate bodies in the US, India and Japan, I hobble into the Occupation arena with a grateful hallelujah and some wild reconnaissance. 

The hallelujah is a chorus, by the way. It also arises from countless other US expatriates who have long lived abroad and prayed for signs of a Yankee spring, i.e., any American uprising against the rampant corporate coup that’s beggared the nation at home and scarred its honor overseas. 

 As for the recon, life in Asia teaches you to see the world as an interplay of living systems – ancient healthy ones like tribes, wetlands and mammal bodies, and newly emerging malignant ones like megacorporations. It also suggests we’re not simply facing a random series of fiscal, social or environmental crises, but a human/megacorps endgame battle for the future of the earth.

Like the sorcerer's apprentice, we have conjured up an army of intended servant beings that have grown colossal, escaped our control and now overrun the planet. Indigenous leaders have begun calling big multinationals bodies an "alien invasive species" that menaces their cultures and homelands more than any threat they’ve faced before. 

In this view, Big Banks, Big Oil, Big Pharma, Big Agrobiz, Big “Defense” et gargantuan cetera are all variations of an emergent new life form – sensually/spiritually/morally blind superorganisms that are alive, in charge and out of control. These Big Bodies' sickening effects on our lands and lives are everywhere apparent, but the good news is that they are a monocultured mutation and remedies that incapacitate some may help to cure them all. 

October 31, 2011

Reviving the Department of Subsistence Homesteads






Dorothea Lange The Wayfarers May 1937
"Mother and child of Arkansas flood refugee family near Memphis, Texas. These people, with all their earthly belongings, are bound for the lower Rio Grande Valley, where they hope to pick cotton." Photographed for the Resettlement Administration.


Ashvin Pandurangi:


First Diamond in the Rough: Reviving the Department of Subsistence Homesteads


I am pleased to present the first article submission to TAE Community’s "Diamonds in the Rough" project, which you all voted to explore! In this submission, Joanna Bailey delves into the history of FDR’s Department of Subsistence Homesteads, created during the Great Depression as a part of his New Deal economic program, and outlines how it could be revived and put to use for local communities and/or regions in the near future.

Artificial Photosynthesis to Power Homes & Villages

While we wait for Andrea Rossi et al. to perfect the long-awaited "cold fusion" panacea, here is a fine example of energetic biomimicry. - Ed.

MIT's artificial leaf is ten times more efficient than the real thing 
By Mark Brown
wired.co.uk
28 March 2011


Speaking at the National Meeting of the American Chemical Society in California, MIT professor Daniel Nocera claims to have created an artificial leaf, made from stable and inexpensive materials, which mimics nature's photosynthesis process.

The device is an advanced solar cell, no bigger than a typical playing card, which is left floating in a pool of water. Then, much like a natural leaf, it uses sunlight to split the water into its two core components, oxygen and hydrogen, which are stored in a fuel cell to be used when producing electricity.
Nocera's leaf is stable -- operating continuously for at least 45 hours without a drop in activity in preliminary tests -- and made of widely available, inexpensive materials -- like  silicon, electronics and chemical catalysts. It's also powerful, as much as ten times more efficient at carrying out photosynthesis than a natural leaf.

October 19, 2011

Forest Gardening - Permaculture

Forest Gardening with Robert Hart
More details and background on forest garden dynamics and design.

Courtesy of AppleseedGarden, which also offers a lot more edifying eco-agro-videos here.

September 21, 2011

Perpetual Bacterial Hydrogen Generators


Applied Sociocracy - Corp Democracy

Can a Company Be Run as a Democracy?

By JACLYNE BADAL
* The Wall Street Journal
* APRIL 23, 2007

During a recent strategy meeting at Ternary Software Inc., a programmer criticized the chief executive's new incentive plan for employees. An hourlong discussion ensued, in which several participants, including the CEO, critiqued the proposal. Ultimately, all six participants agreed to handle incentives differently.

That part was crucial: Ternary runs itself as a democracy, and every decision must be unanimous. Any of Ternary's 13 other employees could have challenged the incentive decision and forced it to be revisited.

Running a company democratically sounds like a recipe for anarchy, and it can prompt bureaucratic whiplash: Ternary, a company with annual revenues of around $2 million, adjusted salaries for employees up and down several times last year.

June 05, 2011

Influential retired officials push drug decriminalization

Leading world politicians urge 'paradigm shift' on drugs policy

AFGHANISTAN/
Afghans harvest opium in a poppy field.
Photograph: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters
Jamie Doward
The Observer
29 May 2011

Kofi Annan, George Shultz and Richard Branson among those urging public health approach.
     
     
    Former presidents, prime ministers, eminent economists and leading members of the business community will unite behind a call for a shift in global drug policy. The Global Commission on Drug Policy will host a press conference at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York to launch a report that describes the drug war as a failure and calls for a "paradigm shift" in approaching the issue. Those backing the call include Ernesto Zedillo, former president of Mexico; George Papandreou, former prime minister of Greece; C├ęsar Gaviria, former president of Colombia; Kofi Annan, former UN secretary general; Fernando Henrique Cardoso, former president of Brazil; George Shultz, former US secretary of state; Javier Solana, former EU high representative; Virgin tycoon Richard Branson; and Paul Volcker, former chairman of the US Federal Reserve.

Agroecology Outstrips Industrial Agriculture on Multiple Fronts

Reimagining Food Systems in the Midst of a Hunger Crisis

A majority of the world's hungry are women and children
By Kanya D'Almeida,
IPS

June 3, 2011


"Analysing the data from the 2006 study by region, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) found that in some parts of Africa the yield increase (from agro-ecological practices) was a stunning 213 percent."
 
WASHINGTON, Jun 3, 2011 (IPS) - Today one billion people are living in hunger, not because of scarcity of production or a shortage of food on shelves in the global marketplace, but because they "lack the most basic purchasing power needed to acquire it", Olivier De Schutter, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, said Thursday.

Currently, 35-40 percent of harvests are lost due to inadequate transportation and storage facilities, while a further 35-40 percent goes to wealthy Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries.

According to experts like De Schutter, the inability of 10 percent of the world's population to feed itself is also a reflection of unsustainable patterns of consumption and deeply flawed models of industrialised agricultural production which, if allowed to continue, will divert 50 percent of global cereal harvests towards feeding cattle by the year 2050.

February 25, 2011

RUSHKOFF: The Evolution Will Be Socialized

"I (suggest) we “fork” the Internet – that we accept the fact that the net is built on a fundamentally hierarchical architecture, surrender it to the corporations who run it, and consider building something else for ourselves."

The Evolution Will Be Socialized
Douglas Rushkoff
02.07.11

From the actions of the Egyptian government to the policies of Facebook, the monopolies of central banks to the corporatization of the Internet, we are witnessing the potential of a peer-to-peer networking become overshadowed by the hierarchies of the status quo. It’s time for us to gather and see what is still possible on the net, and what, if anything, can be built to replace it.

I have had a vague misgiving about the direction the net’s been going for, well, maybe 15 years. But until recently, it was more like the feeling when another Starbucks opens on the block, a Wal-Mart moves into town, or a bank forecloses unnecessarily on that cool local bookstore to make room for another bank.

Lately, however, what’s wrong with the net has become quite crystalized for me. It started with the corporate-government banishment of Wikileaks last year, and reached a peak with Egypt shutting off its networks to stave off revolution. The Obama administration seeking the ability to do pretty much the same thing in the US, Facebook’s “sponsored stories,” and the pending loss of net neutrality don’t help, either.

February 10, 2011

February 09, 2011

A Geodesic Greenhouse — Year-Round Gardening at 6000 Feet



Watch the complete talk



January 15, 2011

Public Banking Institute Launched

Public Banking Institute Launched
Seeks to Rescue U.S. Public Finances

Mike Kraus
January 13, 2011

There is mounting evidence that the public finances of the United States are verging on collapse.

The national debt has burdened the American people with a debt service – the cost of interest – that threatens to swallow the entire federal budget in years ahead.

States from New Jersey to Illinois, Texas and California are grappling with immense budget deficits. At least fifteen major U.S. cities are reported on the verge of bankruptcy. In a desperate attempt to stave off calamity, state and municipal governments are taking measures that many view as a worse calamity.

Police, firefighters, health care providers and teachers are being laid off. City street lights are turned off at night, responses to 911 calls are provided on a “fee for service” basis, public parks are abandoned and infrastructure vital to commerce is left to decay to third world status. Unemployment is chronic and home foreclosures roll on.

Americans are wondering if there is a way out of what now appears to many as a decades long and accelerating decline of the fortunes of the once fabled American middle class.

A diverse group of American educators, entrepreneurs and businesspeople, local government officials and civic leaders, economists, writers, lawyers and others think they have identified the central problem.

They have banded together to form the Public Banking Institute (PBI), a not-for-profit educational organization that hopes to explain to the American people how a national network of publicly owned banks can revive the American economy.

January 14, 2011