It seems the Creator has been bringing a lot of loose threads together for me lately. I have read several good books, listened to some good podcasts and talked to some good friends. I have become aware of a concept that had, hitherto, escaped me. Indulge me as I lay out some of the sources of my inspiration for you, and then I will attempt to put into words the loose concept that is rattling around in my head.
A Lodging of Wayfaring Men: agorism.info/_media/a-lodging-of-wayfaring-men.pdf
In this free e-book the protagonists discuss and visit a house they founded in their college years called the Free Souls House. Here is how the author introduces the idea on page 52
“The first clue that would indicate something unusual about the house and its residents was the sign that hung over the inside door to the house – within the screened porch, just outside of public view. It read: “Enter. There are no rules here. That which causes benefit is welcomed. That which causes harm is repulsed.” Throughout the main rooms of the house were other messages and murals, all hand painted by the present and previous occupants of the house. A painted banner reading “Welcome to Freedonia” crowned a huge portrait of Groucho Marx, captured with his most mischievous expression. A complex mural in the main hallway showed a variety of armed government agents, legal orders, school teachers, and state leaders past, present, foreign, and domestic. It bore the inscription “Our Morality Is Better Than Yours.” Another large mural looked at first to be the classic painting of the Bolshevik revolution, with masses of people walking through the streets of St. Petersburg, carrying huge signs. But on this sign was written “Merchants of the World, Unite!” Once you looked closer, you could see that the individuals in the mural were butchers, shoemakers, tailors, businessmen, engineers, managers, store keepers, florists, old-style traders, and others; all involved in the varied activities of commerce, many with their families at their sides. Perhaps the most common inscriptions were biblical. The Hebrew ‘Shemah’ was beautifully inscribed in gold leaf up and down the doorposts of the main entry way. There was another Hebrew inscription at the top of a hallway. This one bore the translation below it, reading “Let us have a King like the other nations,” and, “They have not rejected you Samuel, they have rejected me.” Another quotation in the living room read “Know ye not of your own selves what is right?” “Let your light shine before men,” “According to your estimation it is done unto you,” and others were present. The ceiling molding circling the living room was emblazoned with the words “Proclaim good news to the poor, heal the brokenhearted, preach deliverance to the captives, the recovery of sight to the blind, and set at liberty them that are bruised.”
Another great work of fiction is Daemon by Daniel Suarez. In it, the author creates a digital daemon through an online role playing game. This daemon begins a series of events that leads to the creation of an alternate economy, including a lot of what I have come to learn are termed “hackerspaces”. The concept is too involved to digest here, but well worth the price of the books.
Of course, I read John Robb’s blog at http://globalguerrillas.typepad.com/ . He helped Suarez with Daemon and he has a lot of info, especially with his new endeavor at http://www.miiu.org/wiki/Main_Page .
Then, I listened to Jack Spirko’s podcast (www.thesurvivalpodcast.com ) # 734 and at the 20:09 to 32:15 point he talks about this article: http://appleseedpermaculture.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/8_Forms_of_Capital_PM68.pdf regarding the 8 types of capitol from a permaculture perspective. This really caused all the other to coalesce around an idea I mentioned a few days ago regarding an artisan market as a community locus.
The idea of an Artists Space/Co-op/market whatever is exciting to me. A space where entrepreneurs can come and access tools and other resources that, alone, would be out of their budget. A place to hang their hat while they flesh out ideas and business models. A nexus of ideas. Some might come for a long time, setting up shop and offering their expertise for sale and as a mentor. Others would pass, having received just enough of a jump in inspiration and resources.
The details are still more than a little hazy. Not to mention all the legal issues, location/location/location, etc. But, I am vastly encouraged that the big white paper that was my post-Army future is starting to at least have some penciled in outlines to it. A small community living a small village lifestyle together, nearby an Artists Co-op thingy that will provide a business outlet and a great deal of resiliency that a community, by itself, would be hard pressed to duplicate. I think this dream is worthy…