Hello new economy

Judy Wick’s Good Morning Beautiful Business is an inspiring read. Judy speaks plainly about her journey of entrepreneurship from  the late 70s through to the present day. She describes the values of cooperation and community that shape her and later underpin a style of business that is genuinely life enhancing.

GoodMorning_small

This book has changed the way I think about business. I have always viewed entrepreneurship with a degree of skepticism, those who succeed seem to attract an almost religious following. Money for it’s own sake has never made sense to me and is certainly part of what is driving the Earth into crisis. Yet I’ve also grown disillusioned with the community and not for profit sector I have worked in for the last 15 years.

The largely thankless (by which I mean poorly paid) work of the community sector is so much at the whim of the politic of the day and rarely seems to generate the kind of radical, long term, sustainable change that I know is necessary. I’ve been looking for alternate ways to make a difference and Judy’s vision of the Local Living Economy is compelling.

In her book she describes money as just one strand in the commercial relationship. When business owners live in the communities they serve, they can see the results of their efforts, for better and worse. They become accountable to the community in a way giant corporations never can be.

I don’t have the skills to run out and start a business but, after seeing what Judy managed to create, I’m prepared to add it to my list of castles in the air.

3 thoughts on “Hello new economy

  1. Another timely post for me. I’ve lately been ruminating on money and my relationship to it. I’m wanting a new story or new way of relating to it in my own life. I agree that rooting business in community is essential for mitigating much of its corrosive energy, but I still struggle with this. Because the prevailing model of money is based on interest-bearing debt, it requires the conversion of nature and human interaction into financial transactions. This has the effect of distorting economic activity such that profit becomes its engine instead of meeting needs. One can dress up businesses in the garb of b-corps or local economies, but as long as the profit motive is central I have a hard time seeing how this doesn’t ultimately take over. Perhaps I am too cynical.

    • I think, given our present predicament, your skepticism is very healthy! Here’s Judy speaking about the ideas in her book: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhV-3iHNSvQ&sns=em
      I love how she talks about growing deeper rather than larger.

      I think I jumped at these ideas because I am fearful about my ability to support my family. Once upon a time the idea of going without money would have been attractive but now it feels too risky. There’s also value in thinking about the transition, how do we move from a life destroying economy to a life sustaining one? The Local Living Economy movement might not be the answer but it is at least a step in the right direction.

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