Cooperative Economics at B.C. Politics
I especially recommend "Towards a New Economics for British Columbia," by Peter P. Dimitrov (Part I; Part II).
And check out this excerpt from Helena Norberg-Hodge's "Foreword" to What Everybody Wants to Know About Money:
Despite massive public awareness campaigns and educational efforts, the environment continues to deteriorate from year to year, communities and families fragment, ethnic conflict, poverty, crime and violence continue to grow, and democracy slips away Economic globalisation is having a disastrous impact-socially, politically and environmentally. But globalisation is far from a natural process: it is occurring because governments are actively promoting it and subsidising the framework necessary to support it. What is needed now is fundamental shift in direction towards economic localisation.
Many people find it difficult to imagine a shift towards a more local economy. 'time has moved on,' one hears: 'We live in a globalised world'. Many such misconceptions can make the shift towards the local seem impractical or utopian. An emphasis on the local economy, for example, can easily be misconstrued as meaning total self-reliance on a village level, without any trade at all. But the most urgent issue today is not whether people have oranges in cold climates, but whether their wheat, their eggs, their milk - in short , their basic food needs - should travel thousands of miles when they could all be produced within a fifty-miles radius. The goal of localisation would not to eliminate all trade, but to reduce unnecessary transport while encouraging changes that would strengthen and diversify economics at the community as well as national level.
Another stumbling block is the belief that people in the south need access to Northern markets in a globalise economy to shift them out of poverty, and that a greater degree of self reliance in the North would therefore undermine the economies of the Third World. The truth of the matter is that a shift towards smaller-scale and more localised production would benefit both North and South - and facilitate meaningful work everywhere. The globalised economy requires the South to send a large portion of its natural resources to the North as raw materials; its best agricultural land must be devoted to growing food, fibres and flowers for the North. Rather than further impoverishing the South, producing more ourselves would allow the South to keep more of its resources, labour and production for itself. Globalisation means pulling millions of people away from sure subsistence in a land-based economy into urban slums from which they have little hope of ever escaping.