Letter from WIN

The Other World That’s Taking Root

Call it constructive program. Call it building a new society. Call it survival.

Organizers around the country (and the world!), re-envisioning political struggle, are constructing alternative systems to meet the basic needs of their communities.

The tidal wave of privatization and the slashing of social services deny more and more people access to a decent life. A reversal of neoliberalism is nowhere in sight.

There is unrest in the nation -- if only barely visible on the media radar -- but it is not moving toward traditional activist measures, like lobbying, protests or electoral campaigns.

Instead, many struggling people, whether guided by politics, principle or pragmatism, are placing their energy and their faith in each other, building new cooperative projects in their communities.

It ís too early to guess where these efforts may lead. They are not "nonprofits" in the usual sense. They need outside money, naturally, but they rely mainly on the support of the people drawn into the cooperative process.

Are these projects sustainable in a maniacally profit-oriented society?  Could they create new political space for the growing population of disenfranchised and dispossessed?  In this issue we take a look at some of these visionary projects sprouting up in neighborhoods across the country.

Time to pay attention.