The climate crisis is far more than an environmental issue. Adequately ramping up efforts to address it will require prioritizing a climate-justice movement which taps the potent activism of struggling peoples for whom social change is and has always been a matter of survival. In addition to resisting destructive forces, this approach will involve wholesale development of economic democracy, including “cooperatives and worker-owned businesses, community-development financial institutions, community land trusts, local agriculture and community-owned renewable energy, as well as efforts to reconceive corporations and redefine economic growth”. Such actions unjust corporate dominance, build local community resilience to deal with climate shocks, and nurture grassroots power to transform systems that urgently need transforming.
The summary above will hopefully whet your appetite for the remarkable articles below. The main one which I have included in full, promotes with compelling logic the need to merge the climate movement with the economic democracy movement. “From Occupy to Climate Justice” was written by Wen Stephenson a few weeks ago. Stephenson also wrote the powerful article featured in my recent post Climate Journalism, Climate Passion, Climate Conscience and Action.
I also highly recommend two other articles to deepen our understanding of what Stephenson is talking about.
1. Chris Hedges’ remarkable prophetic critique of modern society, The Myth of Human Progress and the Collapse of Complex Societies
Tapping the allegory of Moby Dick, Hedges offers a passionate defense of resistance as a source of existential meaning in times like ours, quite in addition to any hope or impact we may promote through our acts of resistance. These times demand a certain “sublime madness” of standing up to both power and nihilism, asserting what is right because it is right.
2. Stephanie Van Hook’s insightful essay The Limits of Non-Cooperation as a Strategy for Social Change
Hook takes us one step further, embracing noncooperation while calling us to radically expand our natural inclination to cooperate. Civil disobedience may be vital, but it is insufficient to transform society. Transformation becomes increasingly possible as we develop greater understanding of cooperation and how to tap it in powerfully creative ways.
The Co-Intelligence Institute offers many approaches to promote our understanding of the practical applications of cooperative power – especially in politics, governance, and economics, as well as group activities of all kinds.