en español aquí: La Cooperativa Integral y el Caído del Capitalismo
In southern Europe it looks like Capitalism is collapsing. . Everywhere businesses are closing down and stolen money moved to tax havens. We have an opportunity right now to start new systems, truly sustainable and without hierarchy, without interest, without rich or poor .. on the way to a money-free world! Below we report on the Integral CoOps, which use new technology to link consumption, production, Community Currencies and Time Banks.
NO to Reaction YES to revolution ..
All the old activists covered their eyes in despair, when tens of thousands of youths from the 15M movement raised their hands in the air and yelled for nonviolence, while being brutally beaten up by the police mercenaries last year. What a shocking lack of solidarity and militancy!
Yet it is also true that direct confrontation with State forces makes us into a mirror image of them. All the dialectical struggle of macho Marxists only led its leaders to the corruption of power, in the totalitarianism of State Communism, or nowadays in leftist parties and sold out unions .
The 15M Movement and Occupy on the other hand are based on the assembly, self organized horizontally, without leaders or parties, without hierarchy, and without accepted sexism, like an internet chat, or in the tradition of the Iberian Anarchists.
So they refused to fight with the police. (Despite the efforts of the secret police and infiltrators,
who ended up on at least one occasion, arresting each other!) The huge 15M movement and later Occupy, returned to the neighborhoods, where they are carrying out thousands of creative community initiatives, including the founding of the Integral CoOps, which use new technology to link consumption, production, Community Currencies and Time Banks.
The truth is that we are not capitalist by nature. We will eat shit and spit it out all week if necessary, but then at weekend party, of course we share everything. Times change, for years the CoOp movement has been characterized by self exploitation, continually disintegrated or bought out by predatory capitalism …
But the moment that the system crashes the Integral CoOp works fine, and makes perfect sense.
We cannot right now defeat the forces of the state, and in doing so anyway we would become beings like them. Also of course such initiatives may get taxed, regulated or even banned, and in the end, I think, a physical struggle with the 1% and their mercenaries will be inevitable.
Yet the very same moment the criminal State cannot pay their wages, all the police and soldiers will just go home, and suddenly support the Cooperative!
Unfortunately predatory capitalism is not about to fall, in my opinion. (it’s still growing in the wage slave States of Asia, who still buy U.S. debt, etc.) Yet here in Southern Europe revolutionary initiatives like the Integral CoOp could really take off , and we can create an embryo of an alternative solidarity econo
my, unless there is even fiercer repression.
Yes we CAN
We are creating a model that can be used everywhere when the system or environment collapses (due to climate change if not before) and that can be a unique step forward in human civilization in many regions of the world where capitalism has never really worked.
WHAT IS THE INTEGRAL CO-OP??
- It has a legal structure as a cooperative and a domestic market of producers and consumers using social currency for exchanges of goods and services, one of its main promoters is Enric Duran, the famous ‘Robin Hood, ‘known activist and anti-hero of a multi-bank borrowing scam amounting to about half a million euros, money which was invested among other things seems to publish a free newspaper which would outline the main ideas of what would become known as the “Cooperativa Integral Catalana”. ( CIC )
The model of currency used in this cooperative is based on previous experience of some existing exchange networks in Catalonia under the name Ecoxarxas( eco.nets), as was the case primarily on the Montseny Ecoxarxa and Eco Xarxa Association of Tarragona, experiences that I discussed in my book prior to the onset of the CIC and that started in early 2009.
The first of them with the social currency Ecoseny is closest to the formula of the CIC, as it implemented in its origins a network of
web-like exchanges, operating as a LETS SCHEME or time bank as well as a consumer cooperative, with the difference that the local currency could not be exchanged in any case for the euro;
The more trade targeted Tarragona network uses the ECO local currency, implementing a network of exchanges between individuals and facilitating exchange between those businesses.
Right now there coexist in Catalonia 15 eco-networks (ecoxarxas ) working together through a computer program using a South African website, CES, allowing the free exchange of social currency among its members and even between members of different networks, in this case in Catalonia.
The currency used is the ECO (some eco-netwoks have specific names), and its proponents see it as a combination of different s paramonetary experiences such as LETS networks at present implemented through a ‘CES’ network including barter to exchange goods and services
- And the currencies of Transition Initiatives Regiogeld or German to be exchanged for euros, in order that local businesses can participate in the same.
The reason that they allow the Euro entry into their system is the need to obtain products through what they term “shopping center” in the manner of a consumer cooperative, purchasing ecological product from politically linked producers that are not available within the network – with the condition of accepting a part of the paymentinf the social currency – and sells them in this casethe bought goods are also sold periodically in social currency i Ecoxarxa Fairs , both members and non-members can buy the social currency against the euro (they also intend to open “ecotiendas “shops for permanent sales). This sets them apart from the aforementioned systems where
money is deposited in a bank or trusted entity until needed.
Part of their philosophy is to consider their work as economic and social experience involving three concentric economic spaces, the first one based on a gift economy, with no registration and based on mutual aid between individuals in collectivized spaces, a second space is for direct and indirect exchanges where it is used as a social currency, recorded by both exchanges and based on reciprocity, in this case within a collaborative environment of social development, and the third interaction space they call the “hegemonic system” and on the periphery of this system, in which we continue to use the euro.
Here inserted is a guide in Spanish on how to set up a Time Bank ( you do jobs for people and accumulate hours which you can swap for other peoples services)
[Slideshare id = 4355693 & doc = guiabancosdetiempo-vivirsinempleo-100530132931-phpapp02 & type = d]
They have also developed different models ranging from currency education for children, a provisional currency for conducting periodic exhibitions, one currency for those who do not belong to any local network but want to be part of the system (the “ECOcoop”) and even a currency designed to one day become a ‘basic social income’, currently being defined.
The Integral Catalan CoOp, Cooperativa In
tegral Catalana (CIC) is broader and more “political” (in its broadest sense) than any other paramonetary experience we know – proposing the creation of eco-responsible companies or communities,in an autonomous and self-sufficient independent system – although the fact that its only in the territory of Catalonia detracts from the proposal (necessary question of a citizen of the world: Why not use with the term “bioregion” instead of the obsolete “nation,” which links to the idea of a national currency?).
Another note is that the CIC value unites all these local networks and all producers and consumers in order to resolve through a cooperative structure all legal requirements of economic exchanges that occur between partners. This gives public credibility, although they themselves say they do not want to become a problem for the system but simply a viable alternative lifestyle.
CIC and the different Ecoxarxas currently total more than three thousand people in Catalonia, hand have also received intentions to emulate in the rest of Spain through 15M Movement, which views it as a key to the implementation of all its initiatives, beyond even barter markets time or Time banks that seem to be what most widely used alternative para economic methods to date.
There is a guide in Castilian (Spanish) here guía en castellano on the Integral Catalan CoOp, CIC, which I recommend reading if you want to deepen your knowledge about it-
same post but longer in Spanish La Cooperativa Integral y el Caído del Capitalismo
- A mutual aid network that yearns to transform. (thefreeonline.wordpress.com)
- Collapsing Capitalism: Global Revolution is NOW
- ecoxarxa www.ecoxarxa.net/
- Porque no hay otra solución.. a la Revolución Social !
- Bankia occupied after Debt Suicides October 27, 2012
- November 1, 2012 Spanish Revolution: Call to Occupy empty Bank property
- November 11, 2012 Collapsing Capitalism: Global Revolution is NOWMadrid 15M:’Es el sistema..abajo el capitalismo
- How to Start a Community Currency (shareable.net)
- Collapsing Capitalism: Global Revolution is NOW (thefreeonline.wordpress.com)