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Adventures in mutual credit

Solidarity economy networks & Software 1

The failure of state-level economic policy is driving the emergence of many independent 'solidarity economy' networks accross the world. While the old story says that resources are short and the fittest will survive, these movements are forging a new story about creating local abundance together. As well as creating a new culture, a new spirituality , they are learning how to

  • feed themselves from their gardens better than supermarkets
  • maximise exchange between themselves (and each other) to keep the value local
  • finance sustainable enterprises,
  • pool risk

Ecovillage economy tour: Damanhur

Most ecovillages are progressive outposts on the frontiers of a necessary transition. Damanhur however is the centre of a nascent civilisation. With over 500 adult residents and tens of thousands of connected souls it is the largest ecovillage in Europe; it has created its own culture and its own ways of living in community and understanding and practising spirituality.

Envisaging Permacredits as part of an ecosystem

Reponse to What Permacredits will look like in our daily lives

Dollars won't be the currency of reference for much longer. Yuan perhaps, or a new gold-backed unit, or Special Drawing Rights, will be the next Reserve currency and and standards of value for the credulous world.

'Good' fiat money?

Yesterday I wrote about how using a currency strengthens the story and gives value to the acts for which that currency was issued. I suggested that anyone can informally certify socially beneficial behaviour and accept those certificates as recognition of their own contributions. Today I will discuss how that principle might pan out in the macroeconomy.

The real 'value' of money

When we are compelled to use a currency using such violent means as legal tender laws, latterly money transmission laws, taxes, bailiffs, and the throttling of alternatives, it hardly matters where the money gets its value, or if it has value at all. The 'value' of the dollar tends to mean its price expressed in other commercial credit currencies, but the real value is what the paper represents, what justified its issue.

The emission of money is always complemented by an equivalent value exchange somewhere in time.

Sharing and software (in timebanking)

In this talk to the Global Exchange Gathering last week, I show how the competition between timebanking platforms is a result of the software structures, and how even if different platforms can't share code, the can still service their users by becoming more interoperable.

The talk was very well received perhaps because I spent the previous five days in reconnaissance, and thus was able to say what this audience needed to hear.

Social proof of work

There is much misunderstanding about the proper basis for issuing currency, especially with regard to somehow limiting the issuance to ensure that the issuers are not over-empowered and the currency tending to worthlessness. With Bitcoin we have a new expression in our vocabulary, 'proof of work'. This too is often misunderstood to mean that work provably done merits a currency reward, but if that were the case the amount of Bitcoin couldn't be fixed.

Grass roots software provider Community Forge goes from 0-100 in six years

Swiss nonprofit Community Forge was founded in the aftermath of the 2008 banking implosion. The first mission statement was about giving communities the tools they needed, most especially the monetary tools, to become more independent and resilient. Tim Anderson, from the LETS in Geneva, had teamed up with Matthew Slater, a software developer to build a community web portal and accounting tool suitable for LETS.

Ecovillage economy tour: Sieben Linden

Sieben Linden (Seven Linden trees) sits amongst forests, fields and sparsley populated villages in the plains of Northern Germany.

How to visit a village on the ecovillage economy tour.

The ecovillage economy tour is an open experiment in data collection. The intention is to build a picture of the overall ecovillage economy so see what business or exchange opportunities might emerge.


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