Newsletter 04 / 2011

Registration for the Annual Meeting now Open

AIESEC Students Work on Cooperation Opportunities
Global Marshall Plan Academy
News out of the Global Marshall Plan Network
New Staff at the Coordination Office in Hamburg
- Plant-for-the-Planet -
Historic Election on 27th March 2011
- Opinion -
Language Culture and Development Mapudungun Vs. Microsoft A Case Study
- Press Coverage -
Presse Room

 



News

Registration for the Annual Meeting now Open

Coordination Group invites you to the GlobalMarshall Plan's Annual Meeting, integrated in the Smenos Summerweek

In their monthly conference call, the members of the coordination group talked about the annual meeting of the initiative. The meeting takes place on 18 June 2011 in Augsburg and is integrated in the SmenosSummerweek “Work Matters – Global Impact”.
 
 
The SmenosSummerweek is a network meeting of different organizations and offers to its participants the chance to work together on different projects. It can be of a great interest for the local groups and committed supporters of Global Marshall Plan Initiative, as they become a possibility to present their projects and during the next days to work together with other local groups aw well as organizations on the existing or new project ideas. Futhermore, the motivational speeches of various speakers will be held. Among them are Frithjof Bergmann and Richard Wilkinson.
 

The venue, the Exerzitienhouse in Augsburg, offers the perfect atmosphere to get to know each other and to work together. The conference rooms and sleeping rooms are in the same house. During the walks in the forest, that is 1 minute walk from the venue, you can talk and discuss you ideas.
 
 
The Summerweek also includes internal meetings of e.g. the annual meeting of German Association Club of Rome, the meeting of New work –New culture and the annual meeting of our Initiative on Saturday morning. During this meeting the revision of the content of Global Marshall Plan and the strategical alignment of the Initiative should be discussed with the coordination group. Furthermore, the applications for use for the Global Marshall Plan Logos will be discussed.
 
 
The Global Marshall Plan supporters, who want to come only on Saturday to the annual meeting of the Initiative, should send us a brief mail on annualmeeting@globalmarshallplan.org and participation is free for them. The meeting is funded by the Global Marshall Plan Foundation. The coordination group is pleased to welcome you. The main language of the meeting is German.
 
The Sommerweek-agenda as well as the registration for can be found here. If you have our bookstore subscription, you can get a 25€ off on the participation fee.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dedicated Global Marshall Plan supporters, graduates of the Global Marshall Plan Academy, members of the coordination group and activists from different organizations will meet on Summerweek and the annual meeting of the initiative in Augsburg in June.
 

 

AIESEC Students Work on Cooperation Opportunities

Report of the Global Marshall Plan workshop at the AIESEC partners meeting

 

With 20 participants the "Global Marshall Plan Workshop" that took place in the course of the national AIESEC conference was booked out. The workshop aims to convey the objectives and contents of the Global Marshall Plan Initiative and was the subsequent development of activities in the sphere of the students.

At the beginning, the students learned to recognize the risks of the currently existing system and the resulting lack of global frameworks itself during the Fishbanks game. Here the "system" was already extensively discussed; especially the question of whether and who could be winners in such a system caused controversies. Following the five components of the Global Marshall Plan were explained and annotated, how it came to the launch of the initiative and with which means the players engage for a world in balance since then. Ongoing projects, such as the Global Marshall Plan Academy, publications and the "high school days for an eco-social market economy and sustainability" served as inspiration for potential own projects of  the participants.

With the awareness that not all groups of our society have the same sensibility for the problems of our world, the participants became active immediately after a short break. Together, opportunities have been developed, how the student organization AIESEC could support and promote the vision of a global treaty based on an eco-social market economy. Besides the organization of high school days and the idea of letting ​​new members at the local committees organize a project for the Global Marshall Plan, the project to let AIESEC students from less developed countries conduct Global Marshall Plan workshops in German schools in the course of the "Development Training" was developed. The training in terms of the content could be taken on by multipliers of the Global Marshall Plan Academy and the organization done by AIESEC. Only the financing of the accommodation for the students is still a challenge. Here were among others host families in discussion.

The workshop was hosted by AIESEC. Andreas Huber was accompanied by Gisela Wohlfahrt. In future she will be the contact for AIESEC students and Global Marshall Plan groups and particularly support in the field of high school days.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

photo: www.campushunter.de

 

Global Marshall Plan Academy

Third module "local options for action" in Vienna completed successfully

 

 

The third block of the current Global Marshall Plan Academy began after an introduction and the kick-off on Friday morning with a presentation on the current fields of action of the Eco-Social Forum Europe by Mr. Klemens Riegler.

The afternoon program was held at the HUB Vienna, where the content of the first lecture included the location itself and the associated concept. After that the Global Marshall Plan Academy trainers once again went into the content, partners, and developments of the Global Marshall Plan Initiative in detail. The rest of the weekend, the participants focused entirely on their competence and project developments.

On Saturday, the participants started at half past ten into the day to complete the planned workshops at the University of Natural Resources. The training in successful planning and implementation of projects - the project management - determined the morning program. In addition to conveying basics common project ideas were selected, objectives defined and project structures and operation scheduling developed.

In the afternoon, the focus of the Academy lay in the development of the rhetorical skills of its participants. In the workshop entitled "successfully argue, moderate, present," this matter skills have been developed and perfected.

Despite the busy schedule enough time remained between the workshops and at the end of each day to explore the city of Vienna and to use the hours spent together for an informal exchange.

On Sunday, the third and final day of the third ACADEMY block, the participants intensively dealt with the projects that were selected the previous day. Under the guidance and advice of the trainers and within exciting discussions it was decided how to further precede with the project ideas. To further develop the participants will also use the new community platform. A joint reflection on the weekend and a feedback session completed the penultimate block successfully as a re-inspiring experience.

The fourth and last block of this year's Global Marshall Plan Academy will be held in mid May in Schlierbach at the SPES Future Academy in Upper Austria.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

News out of the Global Marshall Plan Network

Huge event in Villingen-Schwenningen and new regional groups are emerging

 

Huge upcoming Event in Villingen-Schwenningen, South Germany

Organizing a panel discussion about energy efficiency last year, the Global Marshall Plan student group in Villingen-Schwenningen achieved to organize a whole day event in 2011.
On the 11th of May, they are inviting students and the public to a University Day, launched within the framework of the „Hochschultage Ökosoziale Marktwirtschaft und Nachhaltigkeit“ (University Days for Eco Social Market Economy and Sustainability). This is a common project from altogether six partner organizations, including the Global Marshall Plan Foundation.
The agenda of the day will start with an introduction to the Eco social market economy by Heribert Schmitz. Subsequently, local entrepreneurs are presenting their business models and an exhibition about sustainability is offered to the events’ visitors. In the afternoon, several lectures are giving insights to exemplary future oriented innovations. On behalf of the German Association Club of Rome, there will be held a lecture about the projects DESERTEC and Global Marshall Plan. The packed day is going to fade away with the film “Home“ from Yann Arthur-Bertrand.

The University Days - entitled „Hochschultage Ökosoziale Marktwirtschaft und Nachhaltigkeit“– are a component of the UN Decade of Education. Aiming to integrate the matter of sustainability stronger in the curricula of German Universities, the events shall also strengthen the debate about a sustainable future und initiate further networking in this regard.

Photo: The group of Villingen-Schwenningen after one of their events and at a panel discussion.

Re-launch within the Network

The local Global Marshall Plan group of Düsseldorf re-launched itself and is worki ng as „Netzwerk Öko Soziale Entwicklung“ (Network Eco Social Development) from now on. Jörn Wierz, a member of the Coordination team, stated: „We want to tackle current topics, clear up barriers in thinking and blend ourselves into debates". The group’s first project will be the achievement of recognition of the financial transaction tax by the state of North Rhine Westphalia, Germany.
Supporting the goals of the Global Marshall plan Initiative, the group is profoundly convinced that sustainability and balance have to be implemented regionally first. Only if that happens, it can be exemplary for elsewhere. The group meets monthly in order to discuss current questions and to coordinate their activities.

Their website www.netzwerk-oese.de will be online within the next few days.

Photo: Info Desk at the ecumenical Church Day 2010, organized and implemented together with the Global Marshall Plan group from Munich.

 

Further new establishments of engaged individuals, promoting a Global Marshall Plan

Stimulated by interested individuals, there are local Global Marshall groups emerging in Mainz and Hannover, Germany, as well as Oklahoma City. You will read more about these developments in the next newsletter.


 

 

New Staff at the Coordination Office in Hamburg

Global Marshall Plan Foundation expands supervision of the regional groups and organizors of the "Hochschultage" (University Days)

 

Since April 1st, the Global Marshall Plan coordination office in Hamburg is supported by Gisela Wohlfahrt. Gisela completed her masters course Global Studies – A European Perspective in November 2010. During her studies, which she passed in Germany, Australia, Austria and the United States, she engaged intensively with the processes and impacts of globalization in the industrialized as well as developping world. Besides performing a field research in Cambodia, she collected some practical experiences in Thailand and Serbia. Furthermore, she holds a bachelor degree in European Studies and Applied Cultural Sciences, from the University of Karlsruhe, Germany. There, she was also an active member of the first regional Global Marshall Plan student group. What she valued most at the group was the mately and nearly family like handling among each other.

Gisela is responsible for the supervision of the regional Global Marshall Plan groups, is supporting the editors of the newsletter and coordinates the implementation of the University Days – Hochschultage Ökosoziale Marktwirtschaft und Nachhaltigkeit – on behalf of the Global Marshall Plan Initiative.

People, who want to engage locally, can contact Andreas Huber or Gisela Wohlfahrt by emailing to lokalgruppen@globalmarshallplan.org.

Supporters who want to organize University Days can reach Gisela at hochschultage@globalmarshallplan.org.

 


 

 

- Plant-for-the-Planet -

 

 

 

 

Historic Election on 27th March 2011

The Plant-for-the-Planet children elected their Global Board

 

Children Initiative Plant-for-the-Planet has reconstituted itself as a democratic association and elected its first Global Board

 

 

  • Inaugural Meeting in Possenhofen (Bavaria) on the week-end from the 26th to 27th of March 2011
  • First Global Board consists of 14 children from eight nations

 

Paehl, 28th of March 2011 – Exactly four years after the Children Initiative has planted their first tree, Plant-for-the-Planet presented a number of recent developments to the public: The informal Children Initiative has become a globally operating democratic association. The children that were eligible to vote as founding members of the initiative have elected the first Global Board during the association’s inaugural meeting in Possenhofen on the weekend of the 26th and 27th of March. In addition, the association’s first Global President and his Vice-President were elected. The newly elected Global Board was presented to the public alongside the newly established adult Circle of Friends.

The association’s inaugural meeting and election of the Global Board represent important milestones in the development of the Children Initiative, which was initially founded by the nine-year-old Felix Finkbeiner. Felix had been inspired to fight climate change because of a school project and planted the first tree of the project on the 28th of March in 2007. Currently over 100.000 children from 98 nations are participating in the activities of the Children Initiative. The new-found association has 183 members, all of which were playing an active part in the inauguration. While the headquarters will remain in Germany, everybody regardless of their nationality or age can become a member of the association.

 

“We hope that the newly established democratic structure will strengthen our international network and pool our resources for greater effect” said newly elected Global President, Felix Finkbeiner. “I am very happy that I was awarded this honour and I am looking forward to the coming 365 days that my term of office will last. I am also looking forward to hand over the presidency in a year’s time so that the next generation of Plant-for-the-Planet children can take over.”

 

First Global Board democratically elected

The Global Board of the Plant-for-the-Planet Children Initiative has been elected by the children of Plant-for-the-Planet between eight and fourteen years of age. The Global Board consists of fourteen children and one adult member, who is legally necessary to conduct financial and legal transactions and is the only Board member appointed by adults. All candidates for the remaining Global Board seats and the presidency are children between eight and fourteen years of age.

 

“A democratic association led by children is extraordinary for the German public authorities. They have asked a great number of questions and it is possible we might still have to change our statutes, but the central motto of “children for children” will not be changed,” said Felix Finkbeiner.

 

The fourteen children of the Global Board stem from eight nations and include representatives of the seven Plant-for-the-Planet regions of Africa, Asian-Pacific region, China, India, Latin America and the Caribbean, Eastern Europe and Western Europe, the USA and Canada as well as seven representatives of the most active local initiatives.

The local initiatives are the most important operational units of the Plant-for-the-Planet Children Initiative, the seven most active of them had been determined by a set of stringent criteria including the number of members, planned and implemented projects (activities and presentations), donations collected and number of trees planted. These seven local initiatives elected one of their members to represent them on the Global Board. During the second general ballot the children then elected Global Board members Felix Finkbeiner from Germany as global president and Yugratna Srivastava from India as his Vice-President.

 

The Plant-for-the-Planet foundation created in January 2010 is also run by children and will remain operational, as will the children’s council. The foundation will support the association in its activities and financial requirements as a partner organization.

 

Duties and responsibilities of the Global Board

Important responsibilities await the Board during their term of office: They will administer the global activities of the Children Initiative and support the local initiatives with advice and personal commitment. Furthermore they are tasked with the development of an annual action plan and its implementation. They determine general strategies and organizational values and set the annual priorities. The Global Board represents the association and acts as a contact node for the media and the general public.

 

The children of the Global Board have written private letters to the noble laureate Wangari Maathai and Albert of Monaco to ask them for a continuation of their active support of Plant-for-the-Planet.

 

Circle of Friends supports children

The newly found circle of friends of Plant-for-the-Planet, led by their chairman Philipp von und zu Guttenberg, has presented itself to the public. This group of adults will be supporting the children in their activities: They will initiate contact with people, help with fundraising and communication and support the administration of the Plant-for-the-Planet academies, in which children train their peers as Climate Justice Ambassadors.

 

The newly elected members of the Global Board:

 

1.Felix Finkbeiner, Paehl, Germany, Global President

2.Yugratna Srivastava, Lucknow, India, Vice-President

 

3.Carolina Castellanos Tarin, Cancun, Mexico

4.Rufat Dargahli, Baku, Azerbaijan

5.Nour El-Mofti, Beirut, Lebanon

6.Maiken Hamaluba, Botswana

7.Carolin Lamatsch, Waldkirch, Germany

8.Anting Liu, Guilin, China

9.Alberto Martinez Tapia, Playa del Carmen, Mexico

10.Viacheslav Samusenko, Murmansk, Russia

11.Antonia Schellert, Cologne, Germany

12.Jule Schnakenberg, Hamburg, Germany

13.Clara Madeleine Slawik, Augsburg, Germany

14.Karoline Wewerke, Berlin, Germany

 

Further information and photos: http://www.plant-for-the-planet.org/press-area
 

 

Press contact:

Plant-for-the-Planet
Melanie Landau
Kreuzeckstrasse 2

82396 Paehl/ Germany

www.plant-for-the-planet.org
media@plant-for-the-planet.org

Tel. ++49 (0) 8808 9345
Mobil.
++49 (0) 178 8221824
Fax. ++49 (0) 8808 9346

 

Here you can see all the members of the new Global Board:

http://plant-for-the-planet.org/info/globalboard

 

- Opinion -

 

 

 

 

Language Culture and Development Mapudungun Vs. Microsoft A Case Study

Essay by Zeki Ergas

 

On Development

 

At the present time, the 'paradigm' that dominates the world can be fairly and accurately described as Neo-Liberal Globalization (NLG). The latter is based on the two essential 'dimensions': Market and State. 2 Market operates on the principle of profit; State, on that of power. Profit is used to accumulate Wealth. Wealth is commonly used to acquire Power. There are two types of Power: Hard and Soft. The United States is the leading proponent of NLG: 1. it is the strongest in the world in both in Hard Power, thatis exercised through sophisticated weaponry, and Soft Power, that uses language and popular culture, inter alia: American English, fast food, films (movies in American parlance), televisions series, pop music, and so on; 2. Power is used to acquire Wealth, both in the rich and developed, and in the poor and underdeveloped countries; 3. this corrupt and incestuous relationship between Wealth and Power is at the root of growing and unacceptable Inequality, is one of the main flaws or shortcomings, of Democracy, the same people move in and out of of dominant positions in both. In the United States, and in the Western world, State Elites are often rewarded after they retire from 'public service' with 'juicy' posts in the business world; 4. in the United States, increasingly, an oligarchic system prevails in which a tiny minority of wealthy and politically powerful people uses the democratic process as a tool to protect and promote extraordinary levels of Privilege. The level of Privilege enjoyed by the American oligarchy, as well as: the African, Asian, Middle-eastern and Latin American autocracies (practically everywhere in sub-Saharan Africa and in the Arab world, in the Saudi royal family, the Emirates, Mexico, the Russian oligarchs, the Chinese and the Indian billionaires, and so on) is simply scandalous. In addition, most Wealth is obtained through capital gains, and involve various forms of financial speculation, which do not have a direct link to the Real Economy. 3

 

However, the recent financial and debt crises, the wind of Revolution that is blowing in the Arab world, and the series of natural AND man-made catastrophes that have rocked the world, have shaken the world public opinion, and it is now widely acknowledged, even by its supporters, that NLG is seriously flawed, and that it must be 'fixed' to avoid disaster. The relevant questions that come to mind are: Can NLG be fixed? And if, yes, how can this be done?

 

I believe that it is wrong to say that NLG can be fixed by means of a number of reforms. I think what can be done is to replace NLG by a new system, of paradigm, that integrates some of the elements of NLG, that is, some aspects of the Market, and of the State, that are relevant and necessary. The new system, or paradigm, however, will be defined by a third essential 'dimension' which exists and is known as the Commons. 4 So: What is the Commons? How long has it been around? What are its chances of success? The concept derives from that of Community. A large number of Communities form the Civil Society (whose 'cutting edge', or activist segment, is made up throughout the world by the tens of thousands of non-governmental organizations, or NGOs). A a noble – and grandiloquent - way to refer to the Civil Society is to call it The People (like in the American Constitution, the definition of democracy: Of the people, by the people, for the people; Joseph Stiglitz has used ironically and satirically in his new article he entitled: Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%; see Note 3 below). Martin Luther King spoke about the People, not about Civil Society. Human Rights are an important new concept at the United Nations, especially at the Human Rights Council (HRC). Common Pool Resources (CPRs) are the resources that should be controlled by the Community. At the local, CPRs include: irrigation, fishing grounds, pastures, forests, water, etc. At the national and international levels, one speaks of:biodiversity, cultural diversity, information and internet, renewable energies, respect for, and protection of, the Mother Earth. The latter are also referred to as Common Goods. Other areas of activity comprise: Commons Institutions, such as:the Global Commons Trust, the Commons Strategies Group, Digital Library, and Creative Commons Communities, like:the P2P (People to People) Foundation, Cafés del Mundo and Commons workshops. Among the many Commons Projects that are being realized presently are: free software licences, open hardware; helping the poor (natural justice), digital trust, digital culture, transition towns movement, Commons loans and P2P urbanism. An important project that involves both activism and research is that of the Genetically Modified Seeds (GMS, whose most dynamic proponent is Vandana Shiva); multinationals like Monsanto, Dupont, Syngenta, BASF, etc. are kept on the defensive.

The Commons has been around for more than thirty years. Many researchers, in the U.S. and elsewhere, have been working on it; its annual conferences are attended by a large number of people. The last one in India was a great success. It is present and influential in the annual World Social Forum ( WSF, created some ten years ago in opposition to the World Economic Forum, WEF, that is held annually, in January, in Davos, Switzerland); there was a lot of talk about the Commons in Dakar, the venue of the latest WSF gathering, in January 2011.

 

 

 

Language and Culture

The Mapudungun Vs. Microsoft Case Study

 

 

Mapudungun is the ancestral language of the Mapuche, the original indigenous population of Chile which, for many centuries, have successfully resisted colonization, first by the Incas, and then by the Spanish Conquistadores. When they were finally defeated by the Chilean army in 1883, their land and resources – fields, forests, lakes, mineral wealth – were taken over by the Chilean State, and given to European (largely German and Swiss) settlers. As a result, in the few decades between the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries, The Mapuche lost 95 per cent of their land; only about 500.000 hectares from the about ten million hectares they used to control remain in their hands. The situation worsened considerably during the Pinochet tyranny (1973-90) and the Mapuche territory further dwindled to about 300.000 hectares (much of the original Mapuche land is now owned by large logging companies – one of which, the Matte Group, controls twice as much land as all the Mapuche communities combined ...). The estimates on the Mapuche population vary between 600.000 and one million (an additional 200.000 live in Argentina); they form thus about five per cent of Chile's total population of 17 million. A significant demographic aspect of Chile is that the latter (in contrast to Argentina whose population is of European stock, formed mainly by the descendants of Italian immigrants) is almost exclusively made up of mixed race people (or mestizos): the large majority of Chileans acknowledge that they have some Mapuche blood.

 

In the last twenty years or so (after the end of the Pinochet military dictatorship), the Mapuche have been involved in an intense two-pronged struggle: recovering their land and achieving political autonomy. Some progress has been achieved: the Chilean government has returned some land to the Mapuche communities; and the law introduced by the Pinochet government - defining the Mapuche resistance as terrorism, trying them in military tribunals, and throwing the militants in jail for long periods (often in solitary confinement) - has been revoked. Presently, relations between the Mapuche traditional authorities and the Chilean government remain difficult, but there is an on-going dialog.

 

 

 

 

The Mapuche Letter to 'Mister Bill Gates'5

 

 

This famous letter was written on August 12, 2005, after the Mapuche traditional authorities 6 held a big meeting called Kimkeche Nutramkan (Conversation among Wise People and Guardians of the Mapuche Culture), at Cerro Nielol (Cerro is Hill in Spanish, a historically important place of the Mapuche people), to discuss the Agreement between the Chilean State and Microsoft that wanted to create a Windows operating system in Mapudungun. The Chilean State was represented: by the Ministry of Education; CONADI, the National Corporation for the Indigenous Development; and the University of the Frontier, known as UFRO, a public university in Temuco, a city of some 200.000 inhabitants and the capital of the Araucania region where the Mapuche live, some 650 kms south of Santiago, UFRO caters mainly to about 7.500 Mapuche students and has an Institute of Indigenous Studies (see also Note 1).

 

In this letter, the Mapuche authorities express their deep concern about this Agreement that was reached without their participation. They explain that Mapudungun is an inextricable part of their cultural heritage and a big part of their identity. This is even more so, theywrote, because the large majority of their land and resources were expropriated by the Chilean State which, they insist, had no right to negotiate and make decisions, without consulting them. They quote the UN's Human Rights Council's (HRC) Special Rapporteur who noted in his Report: '

 

The free and informed consent of the traditional owners (of the language) should be an essential precondition of any agreements which may be made for the recording, study, use or display of indigenous peoples' heritage.' 7

 

The Mapuche authorities acknowledge Microsoft's good will and the multinational's wish to contribute to the development of the Mapuche people by facilitating the access and the utilization of the written form of Mapudungun. However, they consider the absence of an effort to consult them directly as a lack of respect for the Mapuche people. They conclude the letter with an invitation to 'Mister Bill Gates' to a dialogue of equals to 'rectify' what is wrong in this Agreement.

 

 

 

AnInterview with Aucan Huilcaman

 

 

Aucan Huilcaman is the Werken (see Note 6) of the Council of All the Lands (Consejo de Todas las Tierras in Spanish).A very articulate and good looking man with long hair (a traditional Mapuche characteristic), he has tried, one month after the letter above was made public, embarrassing the Chilean government, to run in the 2005 Chilean presidential election (won by Michelle Bachelet, a social democrat). 8

 

In our interview, after repeating the arguments in the letter above, he characterized the behavior of Microsoft as 'intellectual piracy', declaring that the matter has to do with the self-determination of the Mapuche people,and that his organization was prepared to take the issue to the Interamerican Commission of Human Rights.

 

Huilcaman deplored the selection of the Azünchefe alphabet - as opposed to the Ranguileo alphabet which he views as more appropriate (there are two more Mapudungun alphabets called: Unificado and Wirilzugunwe). The Azünchefe alphabet is based on the work of the Institute of Indigenous Studies of UFRO, the Ranguileo alphabet on the efforts of independent experts. At any rate, Huilcaman insisted, the task of converting an oral language into a written one is a very complex one, and a lot more research and study are needed, the Chilean State and Microsoft have acted in a very hasty manner. Mapudungun is a very old language composed of some 150.000 words and idiomatic expressions, which were developed in a history of 9.000 years. Huilcaman raised also the issue of the commercialization of Mapudungun: Is it right to use it as a product to generate profits?

 

Then he spoke of the autonomy question and explained that the Council of All the Lands runs an academy in which a mixed form of government is studied. The Mapuche would like to integrate traditional values – such as sharing, solidarity, respect for the Mother Earth, etc. – into the Western democratic model. He ended his remarks with the word Marichiwen (which means 'We will win ten times').

 

 

 

Conclusion

The Commons Revolution and the Indigenous Values

 

Given the life-and-death challenges that humanity is faced with: global warming, nuclear weapons proliferation, the risks of nuclear energy (brought dramatically to the fore by the recent catastrophe in Japan), the persistence of extreme poverty, growing inequalities, international terrorism, the depletion of natural and energetic resources, corruption, dictatorial regimes, civil wars, etc.; it is clear that we need to realize what I shall call a Commons Revolution whose main aspects I have briefly described above. My second point in this Conclusion is that, in realizing that Commons Revolution, we, in the West, have also a lot to learn from the indigenous cultures and populations, especially in Latin America. We need, once and for all, to understand that, our little planet being finite, we cannot for ever go on consuming always more, goods and services. Our main challenge is, therefore: How to transform this quantitative economic growth that rules our lives into qualitative development that in Latin America is called Bienvivir and Bemvivir (Living Well in Spanish and Portuguese). 9 That means, inter alia: 1. focusing on the Community, rather than on the Individual; 2. sharing more, by eradicating extreme poverty and reducing inequalities; 3. respecting Mother Earth; 4. trying to resolve our differences by means of negotiation and dialog; and, 5. (last but by far not least) elevating human dignity to the highest value of mankind.

 

 

 

*

 

The author can be reached at:zeki.ergas@netplus.ch

 

 

 

Notes

 

1. I was in Chile during three weeks between February 2 and February 23, 2011. We spent (with David, my son who shot 7-8 hours of film, and Simone, my wife, who worked for many years at the World Council of Churches, which runs several projects involving the indigenous populations of Latin America, including the Mapuche) ten intensive days in the Araucania Region where the Mapuche live. That region, whose capital is Temuco, is situated some 650 kms south of Santiago. We visited four 'autonomous communities' (there are more than a thousand in Chile) where we interviewed the Lonkos (see Note 6 below) and other community leaders.

 

2. Neo-liberal globalization used to be based on the Washington Consensus (WC) that operated through the IMF and the World Bank which advocated policies that included: deregulation, privatization, market-friendly trade and investment, and budgetary discipline. The WC has done a great deal of damage in developing countries and the IMF and the WB had to abandon it practically. Influential critics of the WC include Joseph Stiglitz, the Nobel-prize winning economist, and George Soros, the famous financier and speculator.

 

3. See on that subject, Joseph E. Stiglitz's masterful article: Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%, published in the May Issue of 2011, in the Vanity Fair Magazine. The article begins with the observation that 1 per cent of the American population control 25 percent of the national wealth, and 40 per cent of the national income ...

 

4. Elinor Ostrom, a professor at the Arizona State University, has been, for several decades, working on the Commons. She was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for her work (the first woman to have that honor). See her: Governing the Commons. The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action (Cambridge U.P., 1990)

 

5. Signed by the Lonkos of the Collimke, Panguipulli and Toro Melin Communities, and the delegate of the the Curaco Ranquil Community.

 

6. The main traditional authorities of the Mapuche people are: the lonko, who is the head or chief of a community; the werkén, a leader subordinate to the lonko, who acts as a messenger, or spokesperson; the ngenpin (from ngen, the owner, pin the word), who is a wise man, or a sage; and the machi, who is responsible of the spiritual and religious ceremonies, they are mostly women.

 

7. UN-HRC Report: E/CN.4/Sub.2/1995/26

 

8. Despite having collected some 39.000 signatures, Aucan Huilcaman's candidacy was rejected under the pretext that the signatures were not certified by a notary public (which would have cost a prohibitive 285.000 euros …). His arrival in Santiago on ... horseback caused sensation. The interview took place at the office of the Council of All the Lands in Temuco, on a weekday in the early afternoon; it lasted two hours.

 

9. On November 10, 2010, a large gathering of Mapuche leaders from the Southern territories was held in Mehuin, Lafkenche Territory. Its purpose was how to deal with the 'mega-projects' of some multinationals on the Pacific shoreline that threatened 'to contaminate the sea that is a source of life, health and balance'


 

- Press Coverage -

 

 

 

 

Presse Room

The Initiative in the media

Global Marshall Plan
 



Plant-for-the-Planet

Teaser image: Pixelio, Rainer Sturm

 




Events
 

iMatter: Our Climate. Our Future. Our Revolution.

05/08/2011
Worldwide


Join the Youth Movement. We Will Make a Difference.

 

What? March!
 
Marching. Walking together. Showing up. Street Democracy. Revolution in motion. Together we can change the status quo and save our planet. Together we can tell the powers to live, lead, and govern as if the future matters. Our future. Our revolution.
 
Who? Everyone!
 
You. Your mom. Your friends. The whole youngest generation. Folks who care about nature and are ready to Live as if our Future Matters. Young people who need to stand up and be heard because our future is at risk. Older people who love us. Our government and corporate leaders need to show up too. To listen.
 
When? May 8, 2011
 
It's Mother's Day. And the day we march for Mother Earth. Coincidence? No way. Another well-calculated move on our part to make sure that the message behind this day matters. That this march matters.

Where? Everywhere!

On the city blocks of San Francisco and the suburban parks of Philadelphia. From Beijing to Boston, and Ghana to Greece. From Knoxville to Whoville and everywhere town in between. On by-ways, at beaches, up mountains, through malls. From coal plants to wind farms, from schools to town halls. On a boat, in the rain, over bridges, on a train...(you get the picture).

Short film about iMatter (3 Min)

More information & registration:

 
 

 

Global Marshall Plan Annual Meeting

06/18/2011 - 06/18/2011
Augsburg, Germany


"Work Matters – Global Impact"

The annual meeting takes place on 18 June 2011 in Augsburg and is integrated in the SmenosSummerweek “Work Matters – Global Impact” (17 -21 June).
 
 
The SmenosSummerweek is a network meeting of different organizations and offers to its participants the chance to work together on different projects. It can be of a great interest for the local groups and committed supporters of Global Marshall Plan Initiative, as they become a possibility to present their projects and during the next days to work together with other local groups aw well as organizations on the existing or new project ideas. Futhermore, the motivational speeches of various speakers will be held. Among them are Frithjof Bergmann and Richard Wilkinson.
 

The venue, the Exerzitienhouse in Augsburg, offers the perfect atmosphere to get to know each other and to work together. The conference rooms and sleeping rooms are in the same house. During the walks in the forest, that is 1 minute walk from the venue, you can talk and discuss you ideas.
 
 
The Summerweek includes as well the internal meetings of e.g. the annual meeting of German Association Club of Rome, the meeting of New work –New culture and the annual meeting of our Initiative on Saturday morning. During this meeting the revision of the content of Global Marshall Plan and the strategical alignment of the Initiative should be discussed with the coordination group. Furthermore, the applications for use for the Global Marshall Plan Logos will be discussed.
 
 
The Global Marshall Plan supporters, who want to come only on Saturday to the annual meeting of the Initiatice, should send us a brief mail on annualmeeting@globalmarshallplan.org and participation is free for them. The meeting is funded by the Global Marshall Plan Foundation. The coordination group is pleased to welcome you..
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
Dedicated Global Marshall Plan supporters, graduates of the Global Marshall Plan Academy, members of the coordination group and activists from different organizations will meet on Summerweek and the annual meeting of the initiative in Augsburg in June.
 

 

Plant-for-the-Planet Academy

08/25/2011 - 08/26/2011
Louvain, Belgium


Become climate justice ambassador!

On the 25th and 26th of August 2011, there will be a Plant-for-the-Planet Academy in Louvain, Belgium. Are you interested in participating? If so, please contact Ms. Knuth: kerstin(dot)knuth(at)plant-for-the-planet(dot)org.

More information will be available on our website soon!

 

Plant-for-the-Planet Academy

09/03/2011 09:00 am (local time) - 09/03/2011 6:00 pm (local time)
Oslo, Norway


Become climate justice ambassador!

A Plant-for-the-Planet Academy is a wonderful opportunity for children to come together, learn about global issues and to create their own action plan as to what they intend to do to solve the climate crisis. Here, the main responsibility of raising awareness and taking action is taken over by the children. The children encourage other young people to find and use their voices to have a say in their own future. Participation is free of charge!

More information can be found on our website, further details will follow soon.

Registration for this academy is already possible.

 






Editorial office
Global Marshall Plan Foundation
Helge Bork (V.i.S.d.P.R.), Andreas Huber

Global Marshall Plan Foundation
Coordination office
Ferdinandstraße 28-30
20095 Hamburg
Germany
www.globalmarshallplan.org
office@globalmarshallplan.org


The Global Marshall Plan Initiative works towards a worldwide Eco-Social Market Economy by the means of a Global Marshall Plan. Global Marshall Plan News is the means to inform all supporters about the latest developments.

Global Marshall Plan News is usually published monthly on the second Thursday of the month. All relevant emails, which are submitted by the editorial deadline (last Friday of the month 14:00) through news@globalmarshallplan.org, will be included in the next edition.





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