I am interested pretty broadly in radical politics, and especially in alternatives, vision for a better world, and strategy of how to get there. This means alternatives in all realms of society: politics, economics, kinship, environment, gender relations, race relations, etc. But I guess my major radical political interest is in economic alternatives to capitalism (I am a mathematician after all 😛 ). Out of the proposals I’ve seen — and it is to my undying bafflement that I have barely seen any, or any discussion of them — the one I that strikes me most favourably is the participatory economics ideas written down by Michael Albert, Robin Hahnel, and various others, mostly the sort of people that write on znet.org /zcommunications.org.

Nonetheless I’m pretty open-minded about alternatives. Just not authoritarian socialist ones — command planning, leninism/maoism/trotskyism, etc. Various other ideas, often given labels like market socialism, solidarity economics, democratic socialism, etc, are all worth learning and thinking about, I think. As well as historical examples, which I think are very important, e.g. libertarian Spain, the Paris commune, Chile under Allende, Scandinavia under social democracy, participatory budgeting in Brazil and India, the Yugoslav model, etc etc etc… Of all these, I find libertarian Spain (i.e. the economic system established in anarchist-controlled regions during the Spanish civil war) the most inspiring. I see “participatory economics” not as a great theoretical development, but as a continuation / modernization of this anarchist / libertarian socialist tradition, adapted to the present day.

Also, when discussing vision per se, seems to me this is often best conveyed by storytelling/fiction. Plus, fiction is fun to read.

So, these are the sorts of things to learn, although I am definitely open to many other things.

Parecon: Life After Capitalism
Michael Albert

The Dispossessed
Ursula K Le Guin

No Gods, No Masters: An Anthology of Anarchism
Daniel Guerin

Things to learn about the world
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