COOPERATIVE: Ideal for an Egalitarian Big Society

A wave of thoughts came into my mind about the new economy after reading some mind-blowing books written by Amartya Sen, Joseph Stiglitz, Robert Shiller, Thomas Picketty, Jeffery Shacks and Paul Collier. They have put the global population – who have very limited access to the resources – at the centre of their debate and raised a concern on how they can be benefitted in the future. Half of the global population has been left under the poverty line, millions of children go bed hungry every night and indeed, this is the biggest concern of future development. Of course, the outcome of modernisation – current socio-economic development approach – has advanced the information system and technology up to the fourth industrial revolution (FIR) and has made life easier. However, it has added several intolerable complications like inequality, climate severity, depletion of water, land encroachment in the face of a growing population. This means, higher population need more resources however it has been reduced due to human activities. Due to what getting opportunities are so competitive and the poor obviously cannot sustain up to the end of marathon. It can be easily manipulated (Shiller, Searching a remedy for the suppressed societies – poverty and climate concern – due to the tide of globalisation a new economic course should be on a top of the list of a query of the alternative development approach. The expectation behind the new economy should be an elimination of the gap between the haves and have-nots for the fairer society. 

In principle, capitalism loves a private investment and can easily manipulate the market by the invisible hands or rent seekers. And, in socialism, the state can be a deceptive manipulator of people’s rights.

Jesi | INCOMESCO, 2019

We need a new economy that can address the need of the bottom billion (Paul Collier) and the top one per cent – who believes in trickle-down economy as a driving force of investment – in a single go. Is it possible? Indeed, nothing is impossible in the world as long as the system is resilient and flexible. Joseph Stiglitz in his bestseller “Making Globalisation Work” has seen a new economic order that cares about poor. He argues that “another world is possible”. Stiglitz indeed said in the grand Nobel Prize awarding ceremony that the Noble Prize to him had added more responsibility to speak about poor. However, some author mentioned him as an ignored American economists in American “largely ignored by those in power” (Kuttner, 2012). Because he is more critical about American economic and global policy. Amartya Sen, Nobel Laureate, underlines that everyone has different capabilities to be addressed. According to him “the freedom to achieve well-being is of primary moral importance, and second, that freedom to achieve well-being is to be understood in terms of people’s capabilities, that is, their real opportunities to do and be what they have reason to value”. Sen, a game changer of welfare economics, wants to empower individual’s capability to make them ready to be benefited from the available goods and services even through the entitlements. Furthermore, providing road facility does not mean it is equally beneficial to all. He means, the socially and economically weaker and the vulnerable are incapable of getting the services physically and economically meaning the more road service does not do anything with them.  So, providing road cannot be a real benefit for those who does not have affordability (a child, a pregnant woman, an elderly man or woman, a person with physical disability, an unemployed youth). Hence, Sen needs an individual caring system. Similarly,

Kalesti village, Tanahun, Nepal : awaiting a development approach to utilise immense resources!
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Robert Shiller – again another Nobel Laureate - want to fix mischievous behaviour of the market economy that appears with deception and manipulation as the profit making tool. The tool is accepted as a business strategy in market economy which is not very helpful where the people are not fully aware of the market economy. According to Shiller, without having full knowledge of the market economy it is impossible to be benefited. In this case, only fistful clever people would be benefited and increase inequality. This deceptive and manipulative behaviour must be known by the consumer otherwise they are being exploited. Likewise, Thomas Piketty revealed a 300 hundred years grave of capitalism where income has been distributed unequally. According to him “Invested capital – in the stock market, in real estate – will grow faster than income (r > g)…The super-rich do not produce the wealth but get highest salary from it.” So it is understood that inequality, climate severity and malnutrition are state-created problem. And, nowadays it has been widening sharply day by day.  Hence, the world needs a different approach to empower poor segment of the society by stopping surging gain-fall of super rich. It is obvious to argue that anyone who is in the power and desires of creating fairer egalitarian big society is quite bizarre without penetrating a different approach to eliminate existing inequality. The truth is, those problems are the outcomes of current system so it cannot be cured within the same rule. Seriously! the statement from several plutocrats like Nick Hanauor (TED Talk) , Ray Dalio (Bloomberg) are worth considering about the emergency of inequality. Otherwise, capitalism is eaten by capitalists as said by Paul Polman (Project Syndicate)

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Furthermore, while searching an economic possibility of egalitarian society from the capitalist to Marxist socialism in principle, capitalism loves a private investment and can easily manipulate the market by the invisible hands or rent seekers. And, in socialism, the state can be a deceptive manipulator of people’s rights. Both have left the big shadow around the weak society. Yet, there is little chance of mix economy which principally collects decorates itself from the good things of capitalism and socialism. However, there is no guarantee that mix-economy can always walk between the edges of capitalism and socialism without any influence of those powerful economic thoughts. The senility is based on the understanding and the conviction of the state mechanism. The desire behind this is consumer sector must be able to demonstrate strong participation in the economy without letting other sectors (i.e. private or government) encroach to its own role.   

It Is time for the Cooperative.

The cooperative is regarded as the backbone of mixed economy. It Is time for the cooperative values and principles for the egalitarian big society and how it works. Cooperative approach is run by international values and principles.

Jesi | INCOMESCO, 2019

Here, the concern is how to make the consumer sector stronger to perform its role with full knowledge of the market economy. The cooperative is regarded as the backbone of mixed economy i.e. democratic socialism. I will be further exploring cooperative values and principles for the egalitarian big society and how it works. Cooperative approach is run by international values and principles. So, we might be able to dig into the issue more through evidence. Stay tuned for the next post.   

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