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Old 12-31-2017, 01:50 AM
 
Location: SF, CA
1,492 posts, read 665,235 times
Reputation: 2287

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quietude View Post
I am looking for local folks (greater Denver area, and Front Range) who might be interested in ongoing discussion - cyber and in-person - of some truly outrageous and radical theories about consumer economics.
  • If you believe (or can visualize) that over-consumption is the root cause of most national and global problems - climate change, resource exhaustion, pollution, economic inequity, social disruption - then this is something that might interest you.

  • If you believe that real change happens from the ground up - from grass-roots efforts and individuals rather than from top-down legislation and political control - you might be interested.

  • If your thinking is outside traditional economic boxes and you often find yourself in something of a gray area when the dogmatic types start lecturing - you might be interested.

  • If, on the other hand, your thinking is bound to conventional political and economic ideas, including most contrarian ones such as anti-capitalism, or if you think economics is a hard science... you might be more irritated than interested.

  • If you think "consumer economics" means bargain-hunting, coupon-clipping, freeganism, minimalism or a barter/gig economy... this is the wrong place for you.
But if you're interested in the theory, problems and shaping of the economic maze we have to traverse as individuals, if you're seeking to share and shape those odd notions of yours that never fit other discussions, if you're prepared to have your awareness of street-level economics expanded and changed... you might be interested.

No formal qualifications are necessary other than a sharp, open and inquiring mind and an interest in - just possibly - helping to change the world. Whether you're a homemaker with a sharp sense of family budgeting and costs or a Harvard econ major, you're welcome in this group.

Questions and discussion welcome here (if the moderator doesn't think this is outside forum interests).

Please PM your individual interest and contact info... if you're interested.
Good ideas; I'd certainly want to get involved if I was in Colorado.

Have you been inspired by a particular writer on these issues?

 
Old 12-31-2017, 09:47 AM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
8,236 posts, read 2,885,539 times
Reputation: 12290
I clearly should have added a caveat:
  • If you categorize every alternative economic idea as Socialism!, you probably won't be interested.
 
Old 12-31-2017, 10:14 AM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
8,236 posts, read 2,885,539 times
Reputation: 12290
Quote:
Originally Posted by NW4me View Post
Good ideas; I'd certainly want to get involved if I was in Colorado.

Have you been inspired by a particular writer on these issues?
Oh, you're welcome to jump in; I have participants all over the US and outside ICE's territory.

This post was to try and find some locals for a more F2F discussion - online only goes so far.

The root ideas are a synthesis from many sources. There's no one writer who quite addresses the issues from this perspective - which is in itself an interesting discussion.
 
Old 12-31-2017, 11:47 AM
 
20,857 posts, read 39,095,620 times
Reputation: 19115
Warning: There are so many definitions and nuances that define "socialism" that one could declare just about anything to be socialist; point is, all of us need to be careful in how we use and abuse that word and it's many meanings.

Here is some basic info from Wiki trying to define it.
"Socialism is a range of economic and social systems characterised by social ownership and democratic control of the means of production, as well as the political theories and movements associated with them. Social ownership may refer to forms of public, collective or cooperative ownership, or to citizen ownership of equity. There are many varieties of socialism and there is no single definition encapsulating all of them, though social ownership is the common element shared by its various forms."

We can argue the flavors and degrees of what is or isn't socialist until the cows come home. I don't want this thread to morph into people arguing about what is or isn't socialist or socialism. There is just no winning any such arguments, it's as bad as arguing over "best chili."

Okay, let's avoid further talk of socialism. If things get out of hand I'll delete postings and/or issue warnings and infractions.

Let's stick to the OP's core idea that we're burying ourselves in trash, burning extraordinary amounts of fossil fuels out of all proportion to our percentage of world population and using up a lot of resources in a world where there's increasing scarcity.

IMO what the OP is getting at is a desire for people, starting at the individual level, to take a strong moral stance on consumption of resources ... from digging something out of the dirt, to making stuff, transporting it, using it, and eventually sending stuff to landfills and recycling centers. This a long logistical chain that's rather expensive to participate in.

IMO is has to start with people at the local level getting the ball started so it can grow into reaching the scale large enough for industry to adopt the goals of such an outlook and make them widely adopted. For example, I bought canvas grocery bags to re-use for years and years so I could stop using those damned plastic grocery sacks which are made from petroleum-based stocks and are hard to recycle. With my canvas sacks there is no endless production of plastic bags and no recycling is required. Even the recycling chain is long...collecting, storing, transporting, sorting, melting, and remaking them into something else; it's a success story in it's own right, but with canvas sacks it's not even needed, at all.

Though the OP wants to do this in the Front Range area, we may end up moving this to Great Debates or some other forum for a wider discussion. The benefit to keeping it in here is that THIS moderator will keep it from being a troll fest for every character who wants to turn this into a political feces throwing extravaganza. Not going to happen.

Carry on. Have at it.
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Old 12-31-2017, 12:30 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
8,236 posts, read 2,885,539 times
Reputation: 12290
Thanks, Mike. It's a perpetual frustration to raise both conventional (but unpopular) ideas and contrarian ones and have someone immediately begin screaming the S-word. It would be a better world and with more productive social/economic dialogue if a contingent didn't automatically assign all "different from now" ideas to the S-bin.

And that's enough S. I'll just add another info point:
  • If you believe economic change can be better handled outside a political arena, you might be interested.
My only goal here is to reach any interested locals. Extended discussion can take place elsewhere - and after 30 years online, trolls don't scare me.
 
Old 12-31-2017, 01:05 PM
 
20,857 posts, read 39,095,620 times
Reputation: 19115
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quietude View Post
Thanks, Mike. It's a perpetual frustration to raise both conventional (but unpopular) ideas and contrarian ones and have someone immediately begin screaming the S-word. It would be a better world and with more productive social/economic dialogue if a contingent didn't automatically assign all "different from now" ideas to the S-bin.

And that's enough S. I'll just add another info point:
  • If you believe economic change can be better handled outside a political arena, you might be interested.
My only goal here is to reach any interested locals. Extended discussion can take place elsewhere - and after 30 years online, trolls don't scare me.
I would tend to say that we need to keep these changes out of the political arena as what mostly happens when congress gets involved is that big money gets its way with little or no regard for much else.

There's an old saying that "the people lead, congress follows" and sadly that's true. Change is not easy and congress won't lead the way on much of anything for fear of running afoul of vested interests and a certain set of billionaires.

For example, now that so many people smoke weed, congress is slowing rolling over to accepting it, but if we had let the liquor industry have its way then congress would still be on the side of putting tens of thousands in jail every year. IMO it's the same with what you're after, people have to do it at the grass roots level, it grows, some tiny micro-companies pop up and then it builds into a sustainable industry.

Same-sex marriage is another example...one or two states legalized...it snowballed...and about 28 states made it legal (by choice or by court order) and soon enough it was legal nationwide with the stroke of a pen at the Supreme Court. Noteworthy is that congress would never touch this, never in a million years, even though they are the ones who're supposed to write our laws, as they run in fear of politicized organized big religion, just as they run in fear of the NRA.

Going further back, the Civil War ended in 1865 but it took 100 years, and FIFTY sessions of Congress, before we had a civil rights act on the books to make damned sure "all men are created equal" was more than just an empty slogan. Congress ran in fear of racists for generations, it took court action to make it happen.

Same with solar energy, we have to put it on our own homes and businesses before congress will do anything to help it. Wall Street would kill solar to retain their greedy dividend stream from corporate electric utilities. Until they find a way to glom onto the profits for themselves, expect little from Wall Street and its running dogs in Congress. I'm rooting hard for Elon Musk and Tesla/Solar City to make this change happen with our help in the form of buying his products.

Another saying I've heard is that "we have to be the change we want to see" in the world. When we are the change we want to see then we stop judging others and focus on our own actions towards being part of the solution instead of just a part of the problem.

All this sums up that change has to start with us, with we the people. We have to do this on our own, our congress is full of utter cowards who are no help until after the deal is done and they can slice up the profits with their campaign contributors. We have to take it away from congress, get it out of the political sphere, and do it ourselves if we ever want to see improvements.

We can transform ourselves and our nation into something better if we want to; for more on transformational effort here's one place to start.
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Old 12-31-2017, 01:53 PM
 
20,857 posts, read 39,095,620 times
Reputation: 19115
On second thought, the word "radical" may be a turn off for some people.

I consider myself "mainstream" and for me the word "radical" conjures up a range of possibilities, mostly bad ones along the lines of violence, destruction, or senseless acts with little or no social benefit. Race riots of the 1960s were radical and of little or no help; the gentle hand of Reverend King who worked peacefully within the system was truly transformational and his legacy is honored today.

For me, "transformational consumer economics" sounds like something I'd read about with an open mind, but put the word radical in there and I'd be leery of it from the start.
__________________
- Please follow our TOS.
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Old 12-31-2017, 03:23 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
8,236 posts, read 2,885,539 times
Reputation: 12290
Hmm. I'll think about free radicals a little more; although the term is precise in this case. I see your point about connotations though.

Transformative is good, but dull. OTOH, it's better than "batsh*t crazy"...
 
Old 01-03-2018, 06:40 AM
 
1,019 posts, read 1,105,746 times
Reputation: 679
" But if you're interested in the theory, problems and shaping of the economic maze we have to traverse as individuals, if you're seeking to share and shape those odd notions of yours that never fit other discussions, if you're prepared to have your awareness of street-level economics expanded and changed... you might be interested. "

Read more: Interested in radical consumer economics?

can I live in WALSENBURG ?
 
Old 01-03-2018, 11:14 AM
 
970 posts, read 519,146 times
Reputation: 2133
What's wrong with calling a spade a spade? Socialism is gaining some traction in the market place of ideas and isn't the dirty word it once was. If we can't label things how is a discussion supposed to take place.

In any case I am a squishy centerist neoliberal so I doubt my opinion will be much valued within your discussion group.
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