Alliance for a Responsible, Plural and United World en Alliance for a Responsible, Plural and United World <span class="nllesouh">A Take on …</span><br/>The Right to Cultural Self-management 2010-10-25 18:20:12 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="240" height="180" /><p>We are currently experiencing a social, political, legal, and economic revaluation of culture, which is thereby playing an increasingly leading role, as much from the empirical point of view as from that of theoretical constructions.</p> <p>Article 27 of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights states: “Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.”</p> <p>Individuals' and peoples' right to culture is not limited to accessing its forms and manifestations; it includes production, promotion, and self-management.</p> <p>Culture should be understood as a form of communication and free expression and, as such, its development should be promoted as naturally, intuitively, and proactively born from its actors, from the most intimate and legitimate personal and group interests.</p> <p>In this context, a cultural agent is a facilitator for the designing, planning, and management of cultural projects, whose role should nevertheless not be mistaken with the indispensable role of a mediator. Everyone should be seen as potentially able to adopt a proactive attitude where culture is concerned.</p> <p> “To manage,” according to Olmos and Santillán Güemes (2004), “is to originate, generate, produce deeds . . . which by nature implies movement, growth, creative transformation . . .” always linked to action.</p> <p>Understanding cultural management as a “set of actions that make possible, make viable, awaken, germinate, and complexify cultural processes” (Guédez and Menéndez, 1994) clearly means that such actions are rooted in the human person and in primary groups, not in a professional trained in this respect, even though the latter can become a mediator if the circumstances are found to be appropriate by the true original bearers of the cultural right.</p> <p>It would be a sign of social maturity to give people tools that can be used for cultural self-management as a way of reducing outside intervention in their gestation and production processes.</p> <p>Indeed, “all those who are part of society must exercise and enjoy their right to culture, which is not only the possibility of having access to the consumption of everything on offer but is also freedom of speech and the promotion, for minorities, of their own identity, free of an imposed hegemonic model” (Olmos, 2004).</p> <p>This leads to demanding a sort of cultural literacy. In this respect, García Carrasco (2009) points out the validity of the expression “multiple literacies,” which puts the literacy process in many dimensions of a broad range of cultural integration.</p> <p>If what is desired is to promote a culture that emerges naturally and free of conditioning, the related policies should include a large dose of dissemination of knowledge generically attributed to management. A true contribution to the democratization of culture should make individuals and small social groups the receivers of theory and practice tools for action.</p> Jorge Eduardo Padula Perkins 2010-10-25T16:20:12Z text/html en Jorge Eduardo Padula Perkins <span class="nllesouh">A Take on ...</span><br/>A Somewhat More Reasonable World 2010-10-05 17:49:20 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="500" height="375" /><p>Men like peace. Pacifist movements should therefore attract crowds of people. Yet this is not the case, and by far: a pacifist march will gather ten thousand times fewer people than a demonstration for retirement benefits or against the rising cost of living …</p> <p>Why so?</p> <p>The answer lies partially in what the average guy is told. The more he is told that war is horrible and criminal, the more he will be frightened, the more he will want to be defended, the more he will approve the existence of an army that seems the best tool to do so.</p> <p>How can we break this vicious, albeit logical, circle? We cannot very well tell him that war is pretty!</p> <p>The average guy will question his convictions if we demonstrate to him, without passion, with rigor, by means of comprehensible facts that he himself can check, that the army supposed to protect him actually threatens his security and compromises the future of his children and grandchildren.</p> <p>Such is the case for our French army: it will never again be able to defend us, <i>no matter how powerful it is and whatever the quality of its weapons and chiefs</i>, because of how arms, the world, and our geopolitical situation have changed; it could instead provoke the total disappearance of our population were a major conflict to break out in the world, <i>even if we were not involved in it</i>—and the risk would become certainty if we were directly involved; it weighs on our economy—37 billion euros in 2010—therefore diminishing our already minute chances of not losing World War III, which is economic and cultural.</p> <p>Whoever understands this will understand that our army has to be done away with, not for reasons of pacifism, antimilitarism, or love of peace and of one's neighbor, but for reasons of pragmatism and concern for security. Of course, it would not have to disappear completely—a few very limited missions still fall under its responsibility—but almost completely, including its nuclear deterrence. This must be done without delay and with no expectation of reciprocity.</p> <p>We can hear objections to this statement: there would be risks. Yes, of course! but much lesser risks than those we are running by keeping it. Let us not overdo ourselves in idealism; let us not seek an impossible absolute security; let us be reasonable and choose the lesser of evils. And then maybe, we will take one small step more for the cause of peace.</p> Pierre-Marie Guillon 2010-10-05T15:49:20Z text/html en Pierre-Marie Guillon Fair Trade: The Coffee Route from the Yungas to Brittany 2010-10-01 16:27:00 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="1024" height="678" /><p><span class='spip_document_1102 spip_documents spip_documents_center'> <img src='' width="403" height="336" alt="" /></span>The adventure begins in 1993 when three Bretons rush, against all odds, into the fair-trade route: Guy Durand, then president of Max Havelaar France, Olivier Bernadas, coffee merchant, founder of the company Lobodis, and Yves Thébault, director of the center for aid through work in Bain-de-Bretagne (France).</p> <p>Their challenge: to market quality coffee, certified organic, bought at a fair price from smallholders, processed in France by disabled workers.</p> <p>The authors of the book, the journalist Tugdual Ruellan and the teacher Bernard Bruel, take the reader on the Bolivian coffee route, from the Yungas, through the port of Le Havre, to the French province of Brittany. A dangerous route, but full of hope… They become the producers' spokesmen. They tell us the story of these companions and cooperative members who, thanks to fair trade, have been able to improve their living conditions and find pride in their work.</p> <p>The book is in French and in Spanish and contains a CD of music recorded in Bolivia or offered by musicians. It is available at <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>Éditions Rives d'Arz</a>. The profits are reverted to the Bolivian cooperatives.</p> Tugdual Ruellan 2010-10-01T14:27:00Z text/html en Tugdual Ruellan <span class="nllesouh">A Take on …</span><br/>Social Platform Asks That Migrants Have Human Rights Respected 2010-09-30 17:42:57 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="500" height="333" /><p>The 4th World Social Forum on Migration is approaching. The event, to be held from October 8 to 10 in Quito, the capital of Ecuador, motivated Plataforma Social Migratoria Hermes to publish its thinking and to place demands reflecting the need to treat the migrant population from Colombia and also from other countries as citizens with rights, no matter what region they are from.</p> <p><strong>Without migration, social, economic, and political tensions would be greater</strong></p> <p>Currently, more than eight million Colombians are outside of their home country. This figure, which is equal to about 17% of the country's total population, is constituted in its majority by women, who represent 52% of migration cases. Half of this migrant population decided to leave their country and seek better living and working conditions in other nations. The other four million had no choice but to leave, as they were victims of forced displacement, motivated in many cases by situations of violence.</p> <p>Colombia today is host to about 200 thousand persons from other countries, who, like Colombian migrants, are also fighting to have their rights recognized. Plataforma Social Migratoria Hermes reports that these foreigners are living in extremely vulnerable conditions, mainly because the state has not done its share to guarantee security, equal opportunities, participation, and well-being to all its citizens.</p> <p>“Transnational migrant labor," stresses Plataforma, "contributes to reducing the social pressures in its country of origin where unemployment rates and the informal economy are rampant, as well as precarious working conditions, the low quality of health care, and scarce opportunities of civic participation; in these conditions, international migration becomes functional for the Colombian state, given its inability to solve its own social tensions. If the migration alternative did not exist for a good part of the population, social, economic, and political tensions in the country would most probably be greater."</p> <p><strong>The experience of civil society should be taken into account when designing public policy</strong></p> <p>It was in this context that social, religious, academic, and union organizations, and concerned social actors joined, in 2008, to constitute Plataforma Social Migratoria HERMES. One of the first initiatives of the organization was to formulate and submit to Congress the National Migrations system, a mechanism intended to guarantee that Colombia's migrant population have effective rights, including women's, girls', children's and adolescents' rights.</p> <p>Beyond launching this mechanism, there is also the concern that all benefits suggested for the population in a migration situation should be inclusive and developed jointly with the main stakeholders. The Platforma states that “public policy acquires its legitimacy and the capacity to change the living conditions of migrant citizens for the better only when it promotes and is based on social participation.”</p> <p>Among the Plataforma's foremost demands for migrants is recognition of the experience of civil-society actors and use of their knowledge when designing and evaluating public policy to favor migrants and their families.</p> Natasha Pitts 2010-09-30T15:42:57Z text/html en Natasha Pitts <span class="nllesouh">Somewhere on the Planet</span><br/>US Social Forum Held in Detroit 2010-09-30 15:38:08 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="500" height="333" /><p>Last June, about 15,000 activists gathered in Detroit for the second US Social Forum. This represented a 50% increase in participants compared with the first edition that was held in June 2007. The deepening economic crisis in the U.S. no doubt partly explains this increase.</p> <p><strong>Event hosted in US city with largest Muslim community</strong></p> <p>Hosting this event in Detroit was a deliberate choice. The historical capital of the automotive industry is one of the cities most affected by the economic and housing crisis. In the last 30 years, more than one third of the population has left, either for other parts of the country or to outlying cities. The vacancy rate for all types of housing is 17%. The mayor is pursuing a deliberate policy that is detrimental to disadvantaged neighborhoods. There is a policy in effect to demolish entire sections of neighborhoods to sell land to speculators. Parks and schools are being closed. In order to counter this situation, there are strong social movements in Afro-American and immigrant communities, since the golden days of the automotive industry had attracted high immigration. Detroit is the American city with the largest Muslim community as well as the largest Palestinian community. One resistance initiative and alternative industry is urban agriculture. It is the largest such movement in the USA, both to feed itself and to create work opportunities, especially for young people.</p> <p>This was the context that motivated the US Solidarity Economy Network (SEN) and allied groups to organize a series of workshops. It is important to note the strong presence of the movement related to food issues, that represented community supported agriculture or peasants' and small-scale farmers' movements who are members of Via Campesina. Interestingly, a meeting was held to organize a US network for Food Sovereignty. As with other Social Fora in the world, many of the participants adhere to the anti-globalization movement, and many are members of a wide variety of political movements such as Anarchists, Socialists and Trotskyites.</p> <p><strong>A solidarity-based economy is already under construction</strong></p> <p>Even if it is interesting to see all these movements, we found that the construction of alternatives was not a major concern for most involved. The third plenary on June 25th focused on this issue. Thanks to the US SEN, the forum organizers had invited Daniel Tygel from the Brazilian Forum of Solidarity Economy to present the perspectives of solidarity economy. He reported on the progress of solidarity economy in Brazil, including the creation of a movement that is now rooted throughout the country. He stressed the importance of reaching beyond the capitalist discourse (strong at the Forum) and the importance of "hands-on work". This means concretely building economic activities that are self-managed by the people involved. The fact that these activities are solidarity-based is in itself a reflection of their political impact, an affirmation that another possible is not only possible, but it is already being built.</p> Yvon Poirier 2010-09-30T13:38:08Z text/html en Yvon Poirier <span class="nllesouh">Seeking Partners</span><br/>Invitation to Join the World Parliament Experiment 2009-12-31 10:38:11 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="448" height="298" /><p>We believe that another world is possible. But what does this new world look like? The World Parliament Experiment (WPE) is not just against the current world order, it is a positive vision of a fully democratic world, in which everybody will take part and have a say.</p> <p><strong>This is why the WPE is YOUR democracy. It is your forum to vote, to elect, to express your opinions, and be elected as a representative!</strong></p> <p><span class='spip_document_1100 spip_documents spip_documents_left' style='float:left;'> <img src='' width="700" height="200" alt="" /></span><br class='manualbr' /><i>First WPE face-to-face session in Norway, February 2007</i></p> <p>The WPE allows political activity on the national and the local level: it is linked to national democracy experiments and it includes regional forums.</p> <p>Everybody is invited to create their own Parliament Experiment on the national, regional, or local, or even the individual level. Just send us an <a href="" class='spip_mail'>e-mail</a> regarding your plans, and we will try to set up your individual space on the <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>WPE server</a>. The WPE Team will provide you with all the technical support you will need for setting up your own Parliament Experiment.</p> <p>The WPE is the Internet platform for political discussions. Besides elections, the forum allows you to debate, discuss, and share your views in a truly international environment! <br class='autobr' /> The WPE results will be introduced into the international political process as claims to decision makers. Therefore, the WPE is a real political factor. The more people participate, the more powerful the WPE will become.</p> <p><strong>Imagine the opportunities of such a global forum! Imagine the combined power of all its participants! Imagine a real World Parliament!</strong></p> <hr class="spip" /><dl class='spip_document_1099 spip_documents spip_documents_left' style='float:left;'> <dt><a href='' title='PDF - 64 kb' type="application/pdf"><img src='' width='52' height='52' alt='' /></a></dt> </dl> <p>For more information on the desirability and potential of this project please see the essay “Towards a World Parliament.”</p> 2009-12-31T09:38:11Z text/html en <span class="nllesouh">Video Song</span><br/>May the Children Sing 2009-12-29 10:38:14 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="500" height="333" /><object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value=""></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object> <p><u>May the Children Sing, by José Luis Perales, 1992 </u></p> <p>May the children sing, may they raise their voice, may they make the world listen, <br class='manualbr' />may they bring their voices together and reach the sun, the truth is within them. <br class='manualbr' />May the children sing, who live in peace, and those who suffer pain, <br class='manualbr' />may they sing for those who will not sing because their voice has been turned off.</p> <p>I sing for them to let me live, <br class='manualbr' />I sing for Mommie to smile, <br class='manualbr' />I sing for the sky to be blue, <br class='manualbr' />and I for them not to spoil the sea for me.</p> <p>I sing for those who have no bread, <br class='manualbr' />I sing so they'll respect the flower, <br class='manualbr' />I sing for the world to be happy, <br class='manualbr' />I sing to not hear guns.</p> <p>May the children sing …</p> <p>I sing for the garden to be green, <br class='manualbr' />and I for them not to turn the sun off on me <br class='manualbr' />I sing for the one who doesn't know how to write, <br class='manualbr' />and I for the one who writes love poems.</p> <p>I sing for my voice to be heard, <br class='manualbr' />and I to see if I can make them think, <br class='manualbr' />I sing because I want a happy world, <br class='manualbr' />and I in case someone wants to listen to me.</p> <p>May the children sing …</p> <hr class="spip" /><dl class='spip_document_1098 spip_documents spip_documents_left' style='float:left;'> <dt><a href='' title='PowerPoint - 1.9 Mb' type="application/"><img src='' width='52' height='52' alt='' /></a></dt> <dt class='spip_doc_titre' style='width:52px;'><strong>Que canten los niños</strong></dt> </dl> <p>In this downloadable PowerPoint presentation designed by Guillem Ramis, you may have to click to change the slides to follow the song.</p> 2009-12-29T09:38:14Z text/html en <span class="nllesouh">Allies Speaking</span><br/>From the Alliance to “oeconomia” 2009-12-28 17:56:27 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="150" height="233" /><p>The work of the Alliance, the findings of the <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>World Citizens Assembly</a>, and the <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>Agenda for the Twenty-first Century</a> that came out of it are my main sources of inspiration. The Agenda for the Twenty-first Century staked out three imperatives: to make the <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>Charter of Human Responsibilities</a> the third pillar of the international community; to start, from the local to the global, a revolution of governance to make the management of our societies respond to the needs of the twenty-first century; to transform our forms of production and of consumption so that sustainable development is more than just wishful thinking, a way of moving in the right direction but in a train travelling ten times faster in the opposite direction, in order to really go toward sustainable societies.</p> <p>For each of these three imperatives, and in particular the latter two, there have been many innovations, and I believe that the Alliance has played a historical role in bridging them all together. What I feel has been missing most of all is a new framework of thought that can be a reference for collective action. Faithful to the ethical line that together, we have set for ourselves, which is to never stop at analyzing and voicing but to risk formulating proposals, I decided to take the plunge.</p> <p><strong>Rules for managing the Common House</strong></p> <p>For governance, this was the subject of my book <i><a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>La démocratie en miettes, pour une révolution de la gouvernance</a></i>, also published in <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>Spanish</a> and in <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>Chinese</a>. This left the third imperative: a new framework of thought for the economy. The <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>Alliance Workgroup on Solidarity Socio-Economy (WSSE)</a> had collected much thinking in this area. It seemed to me that it was still not enough for proposing an overall alternative to dominant thinking.</p> <p>I therefore started out in 2005 with an explorer's, a trailblazer's approach. The two attached texts offer a small window on this exploratory approach.</p> <p>To say the truth, it was blood, sweat, and tears, as summertime was all I had to put my work back on the loom. It was all the more difficult that in 2007, organization of the second biennial meetings of the <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>China-Europa Forum</a> cut into my momentum. But the global crisis was also a powerful incentive to finish what I'd begun. My vital lead was to start from the etymology of "oeconomia," "the rules for managing the Common House," to understand that oeconomia is simply a branch of governance to which we need to apply the general principles of governance I had described in <i>La Démocratie en miettes</i>. <i>Essai sur l'oeconomie</i> was published in French in February 2009. There are excerpts in English and in Spanish. <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>Here is the path to get there</a>.</p> <hr class="spip" /><dl class='spip_document_1096 spip_documents spip_documents_left' style='float:left;'> <dt><a href='' title='PDF - 66.4 kb' type="application/pdf"><img src='' width='52' height='52' alt='' /></a></dt> </dl> <p><i> <strong>De l'économie à l'oeconomie : une réforme radicale de la pensée</strong> </i><br class='manualbr' />Pierre Calame<br class='manualbr' />Introduction to the essay on oeconomia for the <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>Mendès France Center summer university</a> in October 2009</p> <hr class="spip" /><dl class='spip_document_1097 spip_documents spip_documents_left' style='float:left;'> <dt><a href='' title='PDF - 201.9 kb' type="application/pdf"><img src='' width='52' height='52' alt='' /></a></dt> </dl> <p><i> <strong>A la recherche d'un modèle alternatif pour l'économie : journal d'une exploration</strong> </i><br class='manualbr' />Pierre Calame<br class='manualbr' />Conference in Marseilles on September 25, 2009 for the AGIR yearly meetings</p> Pierre Calame 2009-12-28T16:56:27Z text/html en Pierre Calame Alliance Lexicon 2009-12-23 13:03:48 <p>This three-language Lexicon (English, Spanish, French) of Alliance terminology is in continuous development. It aims in particular to harmonize terms originally coined in French with translations that are immediately understandable to English and Spanish speakers. Everyone is welcome to <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>participate in this process</a>.</p> <p>The Lexicon in its current state is <a href="" class='spip_out' rel='external'>here</a></p> 2009-12-23T12:03:48Z text/html en <span class="nllesouh">Point de vue sur…</span><br/>The Story of « Cap and Trade » (L'histoire du marché des permis d'émission de CO2) 2009-12-01 16:01:48 <img class="spip_logo spip_logo_right spip_logos" alt="" style="float:right" src='' width="217" height="188" /><object width="560" height="340"><param name="movie" value=""></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="560" height="340"></embed></object> 2009-12-01T15:01:48Z text/html en