Flourishing as a Goal of International Policy The discipline of positive psychology studies what free people choose when they are not oppressed. I call these desiderata the elements of “well-being,” and when an individual or nation has them in abundance I say it is “flourishing.” Governments continue to organize their politics and economics around the relief of suffering, and I cannot confidently predict that the planet’s future will be bright with nonoppressed peoples freely choosing the elements of well-being. But if there is to be a “positive human future,” and not just a “nonnegative human future,” it is necessary to discover what the elements of well-being are and how to build them. Well-being has five measurable elements that count toward it:
Genuine Gifting Circles vs. the Monetization of the Gift: a warning on the Women’s Gifting Circles pyramid scheme Do you really want to step into abundance and gift? Then do something that offers no direct path to return, something about which you can honestly say, “I’m doing this because it is my pleasure to give,” rather than, “I’m doing this so I will get even more back.” You might end up with more back after all, but if so it will come via mysterious paths. But you won’t be concerned with that, because you will stand confident in the abundance of life, believing that as you care for life, life will care for you.” Republished from Charles Eisenstein:
Lifting the Veil: Obama and the Failure of Capitalist Democracy (2011 This film explores the historical role of the Democratic Party as the "graveyard of social movements", the massive influence of corporate finance in elections, the absurd disparities of wealth in the United States, the continuity and escalation of neocon policies under Obama, the insufficiency of mere voting as a path to reform, and differing conceptions of democracy itself. Original interview footage derives from Noam Chomsky, Michael Parenti, Michael Albert, John Stauber (PR Watch), Sharon Smith (Historian), William I. Robinson (Editor, Critical Globalization Studies), Morris Berman (Author, Dark Ages America), and famed black panther Larry Pinkney. Non-original interviews/lectures include Michael Hudson, Paul Craig Roberts, Ted Rall, Richard Wolff, Glen Ford, Lewis Black, Glenn Greenwald, George Carlin, Gerald Cliente, Chris Hedges, John Pilger, Bernie Sanders, Sheldon Wollin and Martin Luther King. Films For Action's Review:
COULD ICELAND LEAD THE WAY TO A MONEYLESS ECONOMY? Iceland could become the world’s first moneyless economy according to Irishman Colin Turner, founder of the Free World Charter (FWC), who has started a campaign to promote the idea of a resource based economy on the North Atlantic island. Colin, who founded the FWC in 2011 and has already attracted almost 50,000 signatories from over 200 nations, believes that the self-sufficient nature of the Icelandic economy would make it a perfect candidate for a radical shift away from traditional capitalism. The campaign is already garnering support from prominent Icelandic individuals and organisations as Colin explained: “So why Iceland? It’s an island that could easily become fully self-sufficient in terms of energy and food. There’s also a high degree of political and economic awareness and debate especially after events in recent years that have affected the global economy.” “It’s not just about money of course.
Emotional Economics: Measuring What Matters Since the economy came crashing down on us in 2008, there’s been a growing consensus that our economic system as we know it is not sustainable. What we’ve since learned is that money is fiction and the security we think we’ve been building all these years is a myth. Other than its dysfunction, nothing in the conventional economy seems real. So what does the new economy that everyone’s talking about look like? The War on Kids (2009 THE WAR ON KIDS is a 95 minute documentary that shows how American public schools continue to become more dangerously authoritarian. In addition to failing in their mission to educate effectively, they erode the country's democratic foundation and often resemble prisons. School children are interviewed as are high school teachers and administrators, as well as prison security guards, plus renowned educators and authors including: Henry Giroux: Author of Stealing Innocence Corporate Culture's War on Children Mike A. Males: Sociologist, author of Scapegoat Generation John Gatto: New York City and New York State Teacher of the Year Judith Browne: Associate Director of the Advancement Project Dan Losen: The Civil Rights Project, Harvard University Dr. Peter Breggin: author, TOXIC PSYCHIATRY, TALKING BACK TO PROZAC
From Sharing Economy To Gift Ecology Couple weeks back, Sam and I spoke at a local gathering in Oakland. In casual conversation, the convener of our circle, Syra tells us: "I love that so many people are talking about sharing. See, I'm always campaigning for it," handing us a card for local sharing event. "But you know, I tried to get into this sharing conference, and it was 500 bucks! Doesn’t that just feel wrong? Most of us can’t afford that kind of sharing."
The End of the Capitalist Era, and What Comes Next The capitalist era is passing... not quickly, but inevitably. A new economic paradigm — the Collaborative Commons — is rising in its wake that will transform our way of life. We are already witnessing the emergence of a hybrid economy, part capitalist market and part Collaborative Commons. The two economic systems often work in tandem and sometimes compete. They are finding synergies along each other’s perimeters, where they can add value to one another, while benefiting themselves.
Max-Neef Model of Human-Scale Development Kath Fisher: "Manfred Max-Neef is a Chilean economist who has worked for many years with the problem of development in the Third World, articulating the inappropriateness of conventional models of development, that have lead to increasing poverty, massive debt and ecological disaster for many Third World communities. He works for the Centre for Development Alternatives in Chile, an organisation dedicated to the reorientation of development which stimulates local needs. It researches new tools, strategies and evaluative techniques to support such development, and Max-Neef's publication Human Scale Development: an Option for the Future (1987) outlines the results of the Centre’s researches and experiences Max-Neef and his colleagues have developed a taxonomy of human needs and a process by which communities can identify their "wealths" and "poverties" according to how these needs are satisfied. Graphic with 36 cell matrix at
Marie Goodwin on How to Run a Business in the Gift Economy Reposted from Shareable magazine, Marie Goodwin talks about the challenges and rewards of exploring the gift economy. Maybe this is you: you’ve been working for a while on your own, making a little bit of money, maybe a lot of money. But something doesn’t feel right. When you bill people for your time and expenses, something feels off. You hate that part.