On Thursday, 1/5/2012, World 5.0, in concert with a dozen or so Occupiers from Cincinnati, presented Cincinnati City Council with ideas for priorities for the council in this new year of 2012. I also presented the council members with a copy of the book, “World 5.0 – Healing Ourselves, Our Earth and Our Life Together.”
It occurs to me that the Occupied Territories can use comments very much like this to bring to city councils all across the country. The themes and priorities are common to us all. The remark about Chiquita comes from the corporation’s recent decision to depart Cincinnati for Charlotte, as they offered a better tax incentive package. Chiquita was previously known as ‘The United Fruit Company’ where it was known for exploiting workers and resources in ‘banana republics’ in Central and South America.
Here’s the text to the brief speech…
“Mr. Mayor and City Council, World 5.0 is the idea that our current cultural operating system is corrupted by the 1%, and that we need a new cultural operating system based on principles including peace and love instead of the power of money. World 5.0 is a powerful idea, aligned with the efforts of Occupy Cincinnati. In terms of local government, we recommend the following priorities.
Refocus and reorganize all small business support efforts. It is well understood that small businesses enable the best Return on Investment for job creation. Current city support offerings are fragmented and under-promoted. The priority of small business development creates community health.
Connect small business efforts with neighborhood revitalization efforts as well. Use awareness and incentive campaigns to start and grow businesses where they do the most good, in our urban neighborhood cores.
Stop playing the tax abatement game with corporations like Chiquita who seek to be taxpayer subsidized in their quest for profits. Good riddance to the United Fruit Company.
Support efforts to localize our two biggest ongoing needs – food and energy production. Urban farming, rooftop solar, and a host of other initiatives can transform our city. Such strategies not only improve our health and communities, they produce local jobs, and are the clear path to sustainability and a better quality of life.
Address the foreclosure issue and homelessness together. Most folks who have lost their homes or found their mortgages underwater are victims of Wall Street and big bank scams. Most folks without living quarters have suffered under the same broken system, though their issues are longstanding.
Move all city funds, including income from taxes, pension funds and other liquid assets under city control to local, non-profit financial institutions like credit unions. We know now what Wall Street has done to this country. Our money is far more valuable working here locally. The City of Cincinnati could even consider starting its own bank, not unlike the State Bank of North Dakota or the public Bank of Cattaraugus in western New York State.
Finally, we would like to see Cincinnati City Council declare its support for Occupy Cincinnati and World 5.0. Such a declaration creates a partnership and a clear path forward to create a city and communities that thrive.”
World 5.0 provides a template for Occupy in terms of principles and goals. Occupy Cincinnati has adopted peace, love, equality, justice and solidarity – a great start. With such principles and priorities like those suggested above, we help to frame Occupy with a context that clarifies our goals and speeds our process of transforming the world.