A blog by Yanis Varoufakis Why Valve? Firms as market-free zones The wheels of change:
Members of the Beyond Care worker cooperativea childcare co-op in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, supported by the Center for Family Life The common good of us all Occupy Wall Street re-ignited our connection to a basic truth: Solidarity is key to any decent arrangement of life as it moves us to find the common good of all of us.
Is there an institution that embodies this truth more fully? There is a special beauty and power about co-operatives—worker, consumer, and producer. Inherent in its design is the capacity to connect individuals, their individual interests, and their lives to goods and interests larger than themselves.
For sure this happens in the bonding between co-operative work partners as they share the intimacies, values, hopes, and productive efforts of their work lives. But it can, and often does, go well beyond that. A co-operative can be a social and political institution as well as an economic enterprise through which individual members can consciously connect with and serve the common good of us all—starting with their community, then onto a network of like cooperatives such as the Valley Alliance of Worker Co-operatives in western Massachusetts, onto the whole cooperative movement here in the States and across the globe, and onto all other movements and efforts for greater democracy, cooperation, peace, economic well-being, and ecological sanity.
With such awareness she can know she is touching the common good of us all.
One word captures all of this — solidarity. As exciting as this sounds—and often it is that exciting—it is also quite challenging.
Having a deep awareness of how one is connected to everything forges a deeper and more sensitive responsibility for everything. As such it can keep pressuring one to grow and develop as a conscious and caring being, just as any deep and meaningful relationship does. Each co-op can be an incubator for developing this kind of self-fulfilling awareness and responsibility.
For example, individual co-operators are constantly learning how to integrate their self-interests with those of their fellow workers and members.
And any co-operative worth its salt does this while taking into account their role in its immediate community and local area where decisions and actions have the most impact. With its 16, members and a highly functioning system for organizing member contribution, Park Slope Food Co-op can afford to contribute some member time to other community projects in need of special skills.
This kind of capacity illustrates how cooperatives and networks of cooperatives can be a vehicle for reaching deep into a community and promoting its common good.
Cooperative identity and values This view that the common good of us all is the ultimate priority of co-operatives is embedded in the history of co-operatives. This is a living document. First, the movement has modernized it three times through its International Co-operative Associationand The common good principle is central to all of them, although this may not be evident on a first reading.
We want to make it very evident. Definition Here is the current definition of a cooperative:% FREE Papers on Economics essay.
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