It’s an amazing time to be alive. As a society, it genuinely feels like we’re making progress on discussions of systemic racism. This is a huge step forward, both in that I can now have conversations about racism within contexts which felt too “conservative” to have them in the past. And also – the fact […]
Read More Opposing White Supremacy AND Meritocracy (shouldn’t be this hard)
The pandemic offers an instructive lesson: individual action towards a social goal, in the absence of a social effort to coordinate the actions of all, is meaningless. As individuals we can pursue certain types of goals – we can perhaps build a garden, write a play, bake a pie, etc, but we cannot end poverty […]
Read More Thinking the Pandemic: Compliance and Freedom
Recently I’ve been returning over again to late Heidegger’s thinking, partly for ecological reasons, as an attempt to cope with the climatic disasters we’re approaching. But environmental collapse aside, there are good reasons for me to do this: as I shifted away from philosophy to focussing on co-ops, I never really sat back and reflected […]
Read More Heidegger and Co-ops: Ever Learning to Dwell?
Recently I’ve been thinking a lot about the Dark Mountain manifesto: https://dark-mountain.net/about/manifesto/ It’s easy to get caught up in the eschatological aspects, but I think the basis of the project is that it “sets out to paint a picture of homo sapiens which a being from another world or, better, a being from our own – […]
Read More Eschatology and Utopia (Dark Mountain)
Marxists will often tell you that under capitalism, labour is “exploited”. This invokes images of workers toiling in factories, but what is meant by “exploitation” is actually quite technical, and can exist even in working conditions which may seem opulent. “Exploitation” for Marx is the objective source of profit, growth and expansion in the economy, […]
Read More Marxism vs. Owenism: Labour Exploitation
This weekend five co-opers from Toronto made the short (distance) trip down to Buffalo, NY, to visit the Nickel City Housing Co-op. I have lived in the Co-ops in Toronto for more than ten years, and visited other co-ops across Canada and the US, but I’ve never actually set foot in Toronto’s closest American neighbours. […]
Read More Nickel City Cooperative: a very simple site visit
Co-operators go on and on about the “Rochdale Principles”. If you hear someone doing this, it might be the case that they are less than familiar with happened at Rochdale, or why Rochdale is an important part of Co-operative history. As Orion Ulrey, founding father of student co-ops at Michigan State University has argued, there […]
Read More Abolish the Rochdale Principles
19th century American worker co-ops practiced co-operative federalism – they put portions of their surplus towards creating new co-operatives, and they belonged to federations that participated in creating and managing new co-op firms. “In 1885, the Solidarity Watch-Case Co-operative, was organized in Brooklyn, New York, by the Knights of Labor (KOL) after a strike against […]
Read More What Happened to Worker Co-op Federalism?
I mean this both as a diagnosis of the social moment, and as a description of my private life. In my private life, which is to say in my personal relationships, multiple things have happened over the last year, the last month, the last few days, which have revealed to me two things: just how […]
Read More I feel like it’s all falling apart.
Hi Friend, It was really good to see you and your family yesterday. I hope we can hang out again soon. I am writing this letter because I feel the need to say something in response to this notion of “complexity” that you used in one of our conversations to characterize the situation in Syria. […]
Read More Letter to a friend about Syria