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Lift Review: Local Money: What Difference Does It Make?

LOCAL MONEY: What Difference Does It Make? By John Rogers 
Publisher: Triarchy Press, U.K. 2013. 59pp, Resources 1p, Questions for Study Groups 2pp. ISBN: 978-1-909470-19-4.


‘LOCAL MONEY’ is referred to by the author as a pamphlet, rather than a book, as it is so short, simple and clear as an introduction to a complex subject. Briefly, it sets out to explain how local currencies work, their benefits and problems, and suggestions on action for the reader. It is very suitable for a study group. For the reader who is new to the subject, or who wants an introduction to the topic but does not have time to read a longer book, this is ideal.

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Lift Review: Hard to Swallow

Hard to swallow: the dangers of GE food: an international expose

Jeffrey M. Smith published by Craig Cotton   (published by “YES!” 2003 as “Seeds of Deception”)

‘This book is a major event in informing the public about the safety (or more precisely the lack of it) of genetically modified foods, which are hailed to be one of the most important scientific developments of our age…. A particular strength of the book - and this will be hated by the pro-GM lobby – is that it uses very colourful but easily understandable language to describe what is usually regarded as ‘high’ science.’ Arpad Pusztai, Ph.D, British expert on safety research.

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Lift Review: The Resilience Imperative

THE RESILIENCE IMPERATIVE: Cooperative Transitions to a Steady-Sate Economy

Michael Lewis and Pat Conaty. New Society Publishers, Canada. 2012.

This is a sizeable paperback book (text 341 pp, notes 21 pp, bibliography 9pp, index 14pp) by writers very experienced in the USA, Britain and Canada, in the fields of economics, community development, the social and cooperative economy, and more. It would pay to use a strong bookstand when reading it!

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Lift Review: The Town that Food Saved

THE TOWN THAT FOOD SAVED: How one community found vitality in local food. Ben Hewitt 2010

This is an account of how, over a period of about three years, the locals and some newbies transformed the town of Hardwick, Vermont, USA (pop. 3200) from a local economy in decline to a flourishing and largely self-sufficient community of real character.

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Lift Review: Sacred Economics

Sacred Economics: Money, Gift & Society in the age of transition, by Charles Eisenstein 2011

sacredeconomicsfrontcover3The title "Sacred Economics" may deter some readers who feel the book is for committed religious readers and/or economists. Not so!
The most committed atheist, as well as religious and non-religious readers, will surely appreciate the ideas in this book, and its focus on the true meaning of sacred, in Eisenstein's eyes. "The purpose of this book is to make money and human economy as sacred as everything else in the universe." That is, all sacred things are unique and also related, "part of nature, the world, and the flesh".
As for economists - all of them should read this book, and see the ideas explained in the language of the ordinary reader. Very few portions of the book will challenge the reasonably-educated reader. Eisenstein expresses his ideas clearly, with fascinating explanations and examples, and often with humour. It's a big book, but it's not heavy.

 

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LIFT's Latest Book Review

This changes everything: Capitalism vs the climate
 
klein thunberg
Naomi Klein interviews Greta Thunberg in New York - September 9, 2019.

 

Reviewed by Juliet Adams

 This is one of the most important books in LIFT.

It explains everything about what’s wrong with our world (well, almost!). It tells us about everything that is being done and that can be done to change the situation and save our future (well, almost!).  

If Naomi Klein had included any more topics the book would have been too heavy!  

Don’t let that put you off. It may take a lot of time to read; maybe you’ll even skip some  pages (I couldn’t!) But it will enlighten you with its detail, thoroughly backed by references, on so  many important topics, revealed in everyday language with clarifying examples.

She writes: “So my mind keeps coming back to the question: what is wrong with us? What is really preventing us  from putting out the fire that is threatening to burn down our collective house? 

“I think the answer is far more simple than many have led us to believe: we have not done the things  that are necessary to lower emissions because those things fundamentally conflict with deregulated  capitalism, the reigning ideology for the entire period we have been struggling to find a way out of  this crisis. We are stuck because the actions that would give us the best chance of averting  catastrophe – and would benefit the vast majority – are extremely threatening to an elite minority that has a stranglehold over our economy, our political process, and most of our major media  outlets.”

Not only does she explain how and why things have gone wrong with each aspect (climate  change, fossil fuels’ dominance, free market fundamentalism, big business and greenwashing,  misplaced dreams of technology, greedy exploitation of the planet and its people, to name a few) ;  she also explains for each one the actions that have been taken and are being taken to remedy  them.

She doesn’t just leave that till a chapter at the end, as many writers do.

One LIFT member has pointed out that she has not explained the rising tide of alternative money systems that could reduce the power of those controlling many of the problems.  A good  point.  Maybe that will be her next book?  This book is inspiring!

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LIFT's Reviews & Summaries

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 Wanting to read one of our great books but just don't have time?

Just ask Juliet for a summary, she has several available by email including:
  • "Blessed Unrest", by Paul Hawken
  • "Fleeing Vesuvius", by FEASTA and LE
  • "No More Throwaway People", by Edgar S. Cahn
  • "Sacred Economics", by Charles Eisenstein
  • "The End of Money and the Future of Civilization", by Thomas H. Greco
  • "The Future of Money", by Bernard Lietaer
  • "We the People", by John Buck and Sharon Villines