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The Cookie Crumbles - Part Two
The members own Co-ops. They share the profit of the co-op. The co-op is there to provide for the welfare of the customers or the member owners. In Venezuela, there is a strong cooperative and PROUT movement supported by President Chavez. A group of Proutists went to Venezuela to help with the cooperative movement. Steve Phillips observed, “Wherever we went we encountered a warm and enthusiastic reception. It is beautiful to see such a strong cooperative movement that is supported at all levels: government, community, and individuals” (press release 2). Mr. Forden said, “The whole world is watching Venezuela. More co-ops are starting here than anywhere in the world, 60,000 of all types since the year 2001. We are here to share the principles and strategies of PROUT’s economic model. With Proutists from Venezuela, other Latin American countries, Africa, Asia and the rest of the world, we hope to assist the Bolivarian revolution to eliminate poverty and achieve a high quality of life for everyone, particularly by strengthening cooperatives” (press release 2).
In PROUT it is important to have local sustainability. That means every region can survive on its own and every business in the region is locally owned. No region is relying on another. No business is owned by a far away region. If a region cannot make or grow certain things, it can trade with other regions. It is also possible to buy and sell, but if a region buys from another region, money will be taken out of that region and transferred to the other region. The region that bought will not be as strong anymore. Therefore, it is better to trade. A region that grows avocados, but cannot grow peaches could trade with a region that can grow peaches but not avocados. That way people could have a better selection of food and other materials. Before trading, however, each region should be locally sustainable.
If the main food supply is owned by someone far away and they decide to close it because it is not doing as well as it could in another place then people will be left without food. The owners don’t care. If a large business is employing half the town and the owner decides to close it, half the people in that town will be out of a job. The owners don’t care. Economies are doing really well for a while then not doing so well. When they start to go downhill, businesses move out and people lose their jobs. Businesses that are owned far away pull the money out of the economy. But if the economy is locally sustainable and the businesses are owned by the people in the town the money will stay in the economy to strengthen it and they will make sure the businesses that are employing a lot of people or supply essential goods stay open. The people in the town really care. In addition, they will not produce things that are harmful for them. They are not all for profit, like corporations, they are mainly for their own welfare.
In a time of crises, regions should be able to support themselves without depending on other regions for food or other materials. P.R. Sarkar stated, “The cooperative system is the best system of agricultural and industrial production. It will help a country to become self sufficient in food production and other commercial crops and free from shortages in the supply of food” (Dada 117).
Conversely, some people like capitalism because of the so called global assembly line. It allows companies to make the most profit possible, for example, companies in the US will have their things made in Asian or African countries where labor is cheaper. They pay their workers sub-minimum wage and because people in Asian countries are so desperate for work, the are willing to work in tough conditions for low wages more than people in the US are. In addition, the companies dodge the responsibility for treating its work force (Term-Paper.Us 1). People also like all the freedoms. Like the freedom to have ones own enterprise and make all the profit one wants.
The global assembly line is cruel to people all over the world that have to work in those horrible conditions with not enough food to eat and no education. The freedom to own one’s own enterprise is good only for the people who own enterprises and make a lot of profit from them. It also produces a lot of greed, people want more and more money, and they don’t care for the people who don’t have enough to survive (Mathews 1).
Thus in conclusion PROUT is the best form of government. It allows everyone to have equal rights and to have their basic needs met. It will do away with corporations and keep every economy strong. PROUT is a vision for all living beings. Viva las cooperativas!
"I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. Corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow. The money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working on the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed."
Abraham Lincoln 1864