Re: that last boost, subtoot-ishing because IDK how on topic this is.

I've watched a lot of Richard Wolff lately and I love learning about workplace democracy. Coop-ifying and unionising the economy is unequivocally good.

But the one problem here is that a lot of these solutions are mostly labour based, and seems to take it granted that in a just world there's good work for everyone.

Is it so? Should it be so? Or should our livelihoods be detached from income and labour? Is this sustainable?

@cadadr A long time back (sometime between 2011 and 2018 probably), and likely on G+, I looked into co-ops and where and how they seem to work.

First, there are a number of different types of co-ops, including some HYUUUUGE producer co-ops. Visa and Mastercard both started as same, though they reverted to a more traditional business organisation in the 1990s AFAIR. Former CEO Dee Hock has written two books on his "chaordic" principles, "Birth of the Chaordic Age" and "One from Many".

Worker co-ops are a different story, and (from memory, not notes), I recall these being mostly fairly loosely-organised activities, with Wolff's favourite, the Mondragon Co-operative, being the notable exception.

  • Food service, especially restaurants, cafes, and groceries.
  • Some farms.
  • Acting groups. The San Francisco Mime Troup, maybe, or another group Peter Coyote was active with in the 1960s/70s.
  • Several publishing houses.
  • Smaller technical activities, such as bike shops and the like.

What you don't see a lot of is massive technical or industrial concerns, at least not that have come across. No Co-Op Ford, GM, Siemans, IBM, or Boeing (though the Free Software movement might be an alternative organisational model). There's a lot of creative work (where individuals are highly independent), or loosely-coordinated work (restaurants/cafes). Little that's got strict regulation or trust concerns.

There are also worker-owned companies and co-op housing (a form of asset ownership), among others.

@dredmorbius Wrt that last bit Wolff recently talked about a policy proposal of UK Labour party where workers get state subsidised right of first refusal when companies are being sold, which could see the transition of those huge-capital huge-industry corporations to worker owned democratic structures.

Thinking about that I now imagine a competitor in aeronautics being funded on indiegogo 😂

"$5: Supporter in spirit.
You get a model Doeing A696 and a 2030 agenda signed by all the workers!"

@dredmorbius We've seen in Turkey in the last couple of decades the decimation of agriculture by construction industry that needed emigration to cities and imports "industry" that exploited unstable prices esp. since early 2010s.

A fully coop-ified agriculture industry would be so much more resistant to all these pressures but Turkish right has systematically undone Kemalist and post-Atatürk efforts to industrialise and educate the agrarian majority of the country and

@dredmorbius worked tirelessly to keep them in the medieval conditions that have persisted into 20th century under the Ottoman Empire.

Accost any sufficiently old Turkish leftist and they'll begin reminiscing and weeping about Village Institutes, which were indeed a marvel the landowner (in the late-feudal sense) robbed the country of.

Adnan Menderes' govt has been instrumental in all that acting not much differently than todays govt.

Oh wait, I'm again in off-topic land 🤦


@cadadr “Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives...
I never meant to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to say that stupid people are generally Conservative. I believe that is so obviously and universally admitted a principle that I hardly think any gentleman will deny it. Suppose any party, in addition to whatever share it may possess of the ability of the community, has nearly the whole of its stupidity, that party must, by the law of its constitution, be the stupidest party; and I do not see why honorable gentlemen should see that position as at all offensive to them, for it ensures their being always an extremely powerful party . . . There is so much dense, solid force in sheer stupidity, that any body of able men with that force pressing behind them may ensure victory in many a struggle, and many a victory the Conservative party has gained through that power."
John Stuart Mill ( British philosopher, economist, and liberal member of Parliament for Westminster from 1865 to 68 )”

Conservatives love the ignorant and oppressed. So much easier to control.

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