The Definitive Commnity, Complementary and Alternative Currency thread

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Crash's picture
Crash
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The Definitive Commnity, Complementary and Alternative Currency thread

Hi everyone,

I thought it was time for a definitive community currency thread to include all and any types of systems around which benefit communities of any scale. To include the theory and the practice.

I will start off offering this list of links for those who want to learn more:

http://www.reinventingmoney.com/

Check out the library section in paticular

The mission of this site is to demystify money by presenting the best leading-edge ideas on monetary and non-monetary exchange. It is a resource devoted to the advancement of economic democracy, self-determination, and global harmony.

http://www.andrewlowd.com/thesis/Contents.htm

http://www.uea.ac.uk/env/ijccr/index.html

http://cromalternativemoney.org/

This next one is the Local Exchange Trading System (LETS) design manual. Invaluable:

http://www.gmlets.u-net.com/design/home.html

This is the website of LETS Link Uk, the national body:

www.letslinkuk.net

This is Schumacher's website:

http://www.smallisbeautiful.org/local_currencies.html

This is from Transition, although I personally think this kind of tied-to-the-sterling currency is expensive to set up and less good at protecting a locality from the ravages of the economy:

http://transitionculture.org/2009/12/10/your-free-guide-to-setting-up-local-currencies/   also: http://totnes.transitionnetwork.org/totnespound/home

This is the site of the Ithaca Hours system which is arguably the most succesful of its kind at present:

http://www.ithacahours.org/

This paper focuses on scrip-based local currency projects in the United States:

http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p_mla_apa_research_citation/0/2/2/8/7/p2...

This You Tube vid is about LETS, replacing scarcity with trust:

This film The Money Masters is a good context:

http://www.silverbearcafe.com/private/moneymastersvid.html

So is Money as Debt:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2550156453790090544#

So I am involved in the Bath, UK transition movement and the Bath LETS, we have about 100 members and are growing steadily, and are currently experiencing about 15 trades a month through our online trading platform. We are on the cusp of new business participation and hope to create a more user-friendly exchange rate with the Sterling later in the summer.

I would be interested to hear anyone elses experiences in local or regional mutual credit schemes, alternative currencies, whatever really.

blessings,

Brendan

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PDXcurrency
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Re: The Definitive Community, Complementary and Alternative ...

Great post, let me add to it:

Community Currency Magazine (ccmag.net)

and we are working on one for Portland, OR, http://www.pdxcurrency.org

Mark

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Dogs_In_A_Pile
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Re: The Definitive Commnity, Complementary and Alternative ...

Brendan -

Great thread subject - thanks for starting this.

The local currency movement is already happening in North Carolina's Piedmont area.  The list of participating businesses is impressive and widespread as far as what goods and services are provided in exchange for the Plenty.  I wonder how close the "community" element is.

http://theplenty.org/about

 

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sjmvideo
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Posts: 34
Re: The Definitive Commnity, Complementary and Alternative ...

Thanks Brendan. I have been thinking of starting such a list and have just been spending my time trying to keep up with things here. You have given me the kick to toss in a few of my favorites.

www.transaction.net for a good start and it provides links to lots of great resources and explanations about money and money (currency) systems

I also highly encourage people to check out the writings and presentations of Bernard Lietaer. He has been a central banker, a currency trader, and lecturer on complementary currency systems. He was one of the designers of the Euro and I would dare say understands a thing or two about how the current global system works, how it's broken, and how to fix it.

The following is a quote from a 1997 interview with Bernard in Yes! Magazine.

While economic textbooks claim that people and corporations are competing for markets and resources, I claim that in reality they are competing for money - using markets and resources to do so. So designing new money systems really amounts to redesigning the target that orients much human effort. Furthermore, I believe that greed and competition are not a result of immutable human temperament; I have come to the conclusion that greed and fear of scarcity are in fact being continuously created and amplified as a direct result of the kind of money we are using.

For example, we can produce more than enough food to feed everybody, and there is definitely enough work for everybody in the world, but there is clearly not enough money to pay for it all. The scarcity is in our national currencies. In fact, the job of central banks is to create and maintain that currency scarcity. The direct consequence is that we have to fight with each other in order to survive.


Here is a talk he did in Europe about 6 months ago about solutions for our current financial crisis: Bernard Lietaer Lecture on Vimeo

He also has some papers he's authored on his personal web site about dealing with the current crisis and other stuff about complimentary currencies. Crisis2008 and Bernard A. Lietaer - Published Articles 

He is the one of the few in not only person who has seen money from almost all possible view points. One of his most powerful conclusions that ties in with the quote above (from the same interview) is that:

[I]t is interesting that societies that are using different kinds of currency have also very different collective emotions concerning money. The generally accepted theory—dating back to Adam Smith—is that money is value neutral. Money is supposed to be just a passive medium of exchange. It supposedly doesn’t affect the kind of transactions we make, or the kind of relations we establish while making those exchanges. But the evidence is now in: this hypothesis turns out to be incorrect. Money is not value neutral.

Let’s return to the example of the fureai kippu that I was mentioning earlier, the elderly care currency in Japan. A survey among the elderly asked them what they prefer: the services provided by people who are paid in yen, the national currency; or the services provided by the people paid in fureai kippu. The universal answer: those paid in fureai kippu, “because the relationships are different.” This is one example of evidence that currency is not neutral...

Conventional currencies are built to create competition, and complementary currencies are built to create cooperation and community, and it’s important to be aware that both can be available to make our exchanges.

Enjoy, Steven

Crash's picture
Crash
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Nov 26 2008
Posts: 171
Re: The Definitive Community, Complementary and Alternative ...

Thanks guys for adding your comments and links, Its good to see what others are up to and get some links to new info. I have heard of Leitear, but not read any of his books yet

I have a couple more additions, this is BathLETS website: www.bathlets.org.uk

and this is a link to a cute little book I just purchased called The little Money book:

http://www.fragile-earth.com/money/index.html

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PDXcurrency
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Joined: Mar 19 2010
Posts: 3
Re: The Definitive Commnity, Complementary and Alternative ...

This(below) is an awesome Community Currency Slide Show presentation from the Global Community Initiative. http://www.global-community.org

and one more below, the CC guide (pdf)

http://www.scribd.com/full/28675771?access_key=key-2gfln305b1cy7fauh991

Community Currency Guide

GCI has worked with a leading expert in the field, Bernard Lietaer, to develop a local guide to community currency. This workbook helps community leaders identify the kinds of complementary currencies that might be appropriate for their cities and towns, and gives them step-by- step advice on how to introduce them locally.

Finally the E.F. Schumacher Society list of ALL local currencies that are active.

http://www.smallisbeautiful.org/local_currencies.html

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