Other Worlds

Standing Strong as a Rock

The power of mobilized, united people was proven once again on December 4, when the Army Corps of Engineers denied a permit necessary for the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) to be laid under the Standing Rock Sioux tribe’s ancestral Missouri River. The Army announced that it would explore alternative routes.

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The Struggle for Land Justice Knows No Borders: Corporate Pillaging in Haiti

Since the earthquake of January, 2010, Haiti has increasingly become a target of extraction and private business development by Haitian and foreign investors.Income and trade - if the wages are livable and the trade is fair - would, of course, be helpful for the poverty statistics-topping nation. This would be especially important for the majority of the population who survive on agriculture. However, much of the new business is being planned or executed on lands those farmers’ families have lived on since they were enslaved, leaving them landless and without livelihood.

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How Bill Gates Is Causing the Collapse of Traditional Farming and Local Food Economies

[From a presentation by Mariam Mayet.]

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The Legacy and Current Growth of Black Cooperatives

When I first became interested in cooperative economics, everybody, Black and white, told me that Black people just don’t engage in cooperative economics. But that didn’t seem right to me. So I started studying it, talking to people about it, and participating in the US co-op movement. I found there were hardly any blacks involved, except when they were in agricultural cooperatives in the South. None of the mainstream co-op literature talked about black co-ops, and yet I was sure that African-Americans must have been involved.

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How One Group Is Transforming Power and Protecting the Environment in El Salvador

La Coordinadora of the Lower Lempa and the Bay of Jiquilisco in El Salvador is a grassroots, community-led organization of 27,000 families in more than 100 communities. It is transforming economic and political power and the health of the environment, across the department of Usulután. Pillars of La Coordinadora are participatory democracy, empowerment of women and youth, and – still in the works - education and health care for all. The communities are generating income through a green economy based on ecological agriculture and fishing. La Coordinadora is working to build food sovereignty, protect ecosystems, and preserve the largest remaining mangrove forest in the area.

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Fighting for Indigenous Rights Over Corporate Greed in the Niger Delta

Accelerating commodification of water, oil, land, and nature over the past few decades has resulted in a global power play, wresting precious resources away from communities that have lived sustainably with them for centuries. Oil is one example where the domination of multinational companies has led to mass displacement, seeded social conflict, and fundamentally disrupted the relationship between indigenous communities and their environment.Groups the world over are striving to defend an alternate understanding of the earth and how we should treat it, however. They view entities such as oil as part of the global commons – the set of natural resources, basic services, publicspaces, and cultural traditions that should be part of a public trust to be enjoyed by all – rather than as commodities to be bought and sold. Another way to conceive of these assets is through the Spanish term for them: el bien común, the common good. Behind the commons is the fundamental idea that life, information, human relationships, popular culture, and the earth’s riches are sacrosanct and not for sale.

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