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What Would a Positive Future Look Like?

Since centralization seems to concentrate corruption, the solution is de-centralization.  Since globalization

is meant to create one world government and mono-culture, the opposite, re-localization, might return us to

local sovereignty and diversity.  Notice the name of this organization is not “Our Future” but Local Futures, plural.

-Ray Songtree

 Sign up here for Dec 9th WEBINAR by Local Futures



Local Futures
November/December 2015
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© Anna Jones: Winter Market by the Arctic Circle in Arjeplog, Sweden
Globalization, Free Trade, and our new Going Local Webinar
The International Alliance for Localization (IAL)

In our last update we issued an open invitation to join the International Alliance for Localization (IAL) – a new cross-cultural network of groups and individuals focused on resistance, renewal, and radically new visions of development and progress.

The response has exceeded our most optimistic expectations.  In less than two months, individuals from 28 different countries have joined. These include farmers, teachers, builders, community organizers, environmental stewards, peace activists, homesteaders, students, health workers, business consultants, writers, engineers, artists, radio producers, researchers, and more.

Many organizations have also signed up: groups focused on social justice, ecological restoration, spiritual values, sustainable food and farming, holistic education, and policy research and advocacy. Among these are Swadeshi Jagaran Manch  (India); Digo Bikas Institute (Nepal); Localize West Midlands (UK); The Sustainability Institute and Greyton Transition Town (South Africa); Noakhali Rural Development Society (Bangladesh); Centre for Global Justice (Mexico/USA); Gaia Education (UK); Holy Cross International Justice Office (USA); Small Farm Training Center (USA), and many more.

This broad-based interest in the IAL shows that people worldwide are beginning to recognize that localization is a viable strategy for positive change on a global level.

Learn more about the IAL or go ahead and Join today!

IAL Listserv

The IAL listserv is now active. The listserv is a communication platform for IAL members, providing a space to share and exchange experiences, resources, initiatives and campaigns, as well as strategies to promote a global-to-local shift and build a strong collective voice for localization.  Anyone who joins the IAL can participate in the listserv.

From the Local Futures Blog:
kenyaGlobalization and Terror
by Helena Norberg-HodgeBecause of the mainstream media’s narrow and often misplaced focus, it’s not surprising that most Westerners believe that religious extremism is primarily a problem of Islam. But to really understand the rise of religious fundamentalism and ethnic conflict, we need to look at the deep impacts of the global consumer culture on living cultures throughout the planet. Doing so allows us not only to better understand ISIS and similar groups, but also to see a way forward that lessens violence on all sides. Read more.

Trade cartoonCurrent Trade Treaties: “a revolution against law”

by Steven Gorelick

A respected human-rights expert at the United Nations, Alfred-Maurice de Zayas, has joined the global movement opposing trade treaties like TPP and TTIP. And he has novel and powerful legal arguments. In international law, de Zayas says, there is a hierarchy of agreements, and at the top is the UN Charter: “In case of conflict between the provisions of the UN Charter and any other treaty, the Charter prevails.” In other words, trade treaties that lead to a violation of human rights — or breach any other obligation set out in the UN Charter — are legally invalid. Read more.

Take action: Stop the TPP!
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), if passed, would give corporations vast powers over 40% of the world’s economy, help huge agribusinesses like Monsanto extend their control over the global food supply, and massively expand internet censorship. But if we act fast, the US Congress can stop it. If Congress says no, this terrible agreement dies. Add your name to almost 900,000 others on this important petition to be delivered directly to Congress!
Local Lives, Global Matters

Local LivesAnother gathering in our ongoing series of Economics of Happiness conferences was held last month in Castlemaine, Australia. Entitled “Local Lives, Global Matters”, it featured wide-ranging presentations, panels and workshops – from media liberation and the gift economy to local renewable energy and the moral underpinnings of economics – along with storytelling, art, music and visits to nearby localization initiatives. Plenary speakers included David Holmgren (co-founder of permaculture), Samuel Alexander (degrowth proponent and author of The Sufficiency Economy), Rob Hopkins (founder of the Transition Towns movement), Raphaël Souchier (a localization advocate from France), Susan Murphy (a Zen Roshi and deep ecologist), and Helena Norberg-Hodge. Manish Jain (India), and Camila Moreno (Brazil), who have presented at numerous Local Futures conferences, once again enthralled the audience with their thought-provoking analyses.

The conference was organized by three remarkable women, Ellen Madigan, Carolyn Nielson and Nikki Marshall.  Their hard work and dedication, along with that of the more than 90 volunteers involved, made this a truly inspiring community event.

Policy Watch: Money for the People
Swiss initiativeSwitzerland to hold referendum on money creation

The Swiss population will be the first in the world to vote on their banking and money system! As of this month, the Sovereign Money Initiative, which would limit the power of commercial banks to create money at will, has gathered enough signatures to trigger a nationwide referendum within the next 3 to 5 years. Advocates of financial reform are overjoyed at the news, with one Swiss campaigner calling the initiative “a major milestone for the growing international movement for monetary reform.” Read more.

QENew Campaign Launched: ‘QE for People’

Right now, 60 billion euros are being created by the European Central Bank every month through its program of Quantitative Easing (QE). At the moment this money goes to financial institutions like banks, doing little to help ordinary people and businesses. ‘QE for People’ calls for it to be spent on efforts such as green investment and affordable housing instead. Read more about this new campaign and help get the word out!

Planet Local
Planet LocalFood and Culture: From Honduras and the United States to India and Australia

In communities across the globe, people are finding that cultural pride and food sovereignty go hand in hand. Food and farming play a key role in the localization process, and resisting the influence of the global monoculture can happen, quite literally, from the ground up. Read more.

Credit: Aminah Jasho, KHCP

From the Oakland Institute: Agroecology in Africa

More than 30 examples from across Africa show how agricultural practices based on traditional knowledge can  fight both climate change and hunger. “We are told over and over that Africa needs a new Green Revolution, more synthetic fertilizers, and genetically modified crops,” said Frederic Mousseau, Policy Director of the Oakland Institute, who coordinated the research for this project. “These case studies debunk these myths.” Explore the case studies.

Planet Local is our web series showcasing inspiring localization initiatives from around the world. The series highlights diverse examples of localization in action in such areas as community renewable energy, local food and farming, local investment, eco-villages, alternative education, radical democracy, the local commons, and more.

Please Support Our Work
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Global to Local Webinar Series
Michael Shuman   Helena N-H portrait
Webinar 1: Going Local
December 9th 2015, 4:00-5:00 pm EST
Check the time for your location
As part of the IAL initiative, we are launching a new webinar series that will address key issues in the global-to-local debate.  Registration is now open for our first webinar, Going Local, with Michael Shuman and Helena Norberg-Hodge. The webinar will explore such issues as the potential of localization as a systemic solution-multiplier, the need for a global movement for localization, the myth that localization means going back to the past, whether localizing is a viable strategy for big cities, and more.
Call for Volunteers and Interns
We are looking for help with design, research, promotion (social media, etc.), technical help, and translations (especially Norwegian and Bahasa Indonesian versions of our film The Economics of Happiness). If you are interested, please contact Victoria Clarke at info@localfutures.org.
Global Climate March
Climate March

On the eve of the biggest U.N summit of the decade, the climate movement took to the streets for a Global Climate March. On November 28 and 29, in cities around the world, people marched to demand strong action from world leaders, and to support grassroots efforts to stop new fossil fuel projects, phase out existing ones, and limit the political and financial power of the fossil fuel industry. Ultimately, the goal of the Climate March campaign is a transition to 100% renewable energy by 2050.

Stay updated on future mobilizations to come after the Paris climate talks in December!

Audio and Video
Articles of Interest
Abolish High School
by Rebecca Solnit
high school
from Harper’s MagazineEverything You’ve Been Told About Debt is Wrong
by Charles Eisenstein
Image: Debt Sisyphus via Shutterstock
from Truthout via YES! MagazineFrench Government Will Not Sign TTIP Agreement in 2015
Image: openDemocracy/Flickr
from Euractiv

Seven Ways to Bring Neighborhoods Wealth, not Gentrification
Image by Sarah Oberlin
from YES! Magazine

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EoH film

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