Social Capital Theme

Social Capital is a concept used in various fields, from economics and political science to sociology and natural resources management. Broadly, it refers to social relations and among individuals and the norms and social trust which they generate and which facilitate coordination and cooperation for mutual benefit. -- Stockholm Resilience Centre

Latest Posts

It's One Of A Kind

Kelly & DaveKelly Ignace joins Dave for this edition of ICR, talking about her employer's one of a kind waste hauling and disposal business. Kelly is Director of Marketing and P.R. for American Waste, a locally owned and operated waste disposal business that runs a one of a kind operation on the south side of Traverse City.  American's collection area extends from Mackinac to Manistee and inland to about I-75. Almost all of its collected trash is brought to T.C. and dumped, not in a landfill, but indoors where a combination of mechanical and human separators divide the single trash stream into its constituent parts resulting in bales of marketable recyclables. Nearly 70% of the entire waste stream is segregated into re-usable product and sold to vendors, without first being buried in the ground. Watch this giant, one-of-a-kind machine do its job. Nothing else like this exists in the U.S. 

Consumer Demand will Determine The Balance

Josh Wunsch and Dave BarronsJosh Wunsch is in on this discussion. Josh is a local fruit grower and experienced agricultural manager with clear views on agricultural trends.  Localism is all well and good, says Josh, but their are 330 million mouths to feed each day. The demand of that, alone, will play into the balance between a fragile, corporate sized food system and a more resilient localized food system.  How far localism goes will be determined by how much 'locals' are willing to pay for more local food and how deeply they support the development of markets. Farmers don't produce into a vacuum. They produce for a viable market that can sustainability pay them to produce.

Localism On A Global Scale

Chris Treter & Timothy YoungThis discussion shares the experience of Timothy Young and Chris Treter of the On The Ground non-profit that sponsored their recent Run Across Palestine. Chris introduced us to the groups first such effort The Run Across Ethiopia, last summer. Chris Treter's business is fair trade shade grown coffee and now, olive oil. The run in Ethiopia focused fund raising efforts to build schools in coffee growing communities; in Palestine, the run kicked off fund raising to plant olive trees. But in both locations the real work was in cross cultural communications and community building. Building communities of producers and consumers that span oceans. Linking our local community in NW Michigan to theirs no matter the distance between. Art is always a part of On The Ground's work. This show includes a performance by singer, song writer Josh Davis with a song he sang multiple places in Palestine.

The Occupy Movement Locally

Dave is joined by three active participants in the Occupy TC efforts going on locally. The discussion highlights the 'message' problem facing both the larger Occupy effort and those working locally: how to have a decentralized movement with some coherency to the message. This talk also shares numerous web-site resources and access points for those wanting to keep in touch with what's going on. Check CommonsDreams.org for links to many occupy resources.

Reviewing Foundation Concepts of Resilience

Bob Russell is in with Dave this week reviewing foundation concepts that are critical to resilience thinking: adaptability, diversity, redundancy, and feedback loops. The discussion seeks to detail the connections between each concept and the idea of building resilience into our Northwest Michigan communities. Towards the end of the discussion Bob and Dave make an announcement which includes a name change. From now on these weekly discussions will be known as ICR: Investigating Community Resilience.

A Shining Example

In this week's program Jan Shireman and Gerard Grabowski join us to tell their story of a business that is a shining example of the all-local, farm to business to consumer economic model so important to building local food resilience. These two created Pleasanton Brick Oven Bakery nearly two decades ago in search of a locally made, healthy bread and in the process became national leaders in the artisan bread movement. Pleasanton Bakery today employs nearly a dozen people in direct bakery jobs. Learn what makes their bread so different. Jan and Gerard share their dream of local sustainable agriculture and of ag-to-consumer businesses to support locally grown food. Only one of the grains they currently use comes from outside of Michigan, but the rest is grown on downstate farms. Gerard argues that northern Michigan needs to grow much more grain for local use, and develop its own milling facilities to turn the grains into flour.

More With Tom Greco

Our second conversation with noted writer, economist, and historian Tom Greco continues with his major thesis: that our money system is built on a debt and interest structure that is corrosive and unsustainable. In this conversation Tom develops his view that the current money system mis-applies the three roles of money: to an instrument to transfer value, to be a measure of value, and to be an instrument holding value itself.  The transfer value of money must separated from the other two, argues Greco, by the development of credit clearing associations built carefully on a regional basis among mutual needs of the participants.

Author Tom Greco talk about the history of money and debt

Tom Greco author of THE END OF MONEY AND THE FUTURE OF CIVILIZATION joins us for two half hour discussions on the history of money and the debt building pyramid- scheme modern money is based on. In this first discussion Greco puts modern money in its historic context and traces its growth to contemporary times where money is controlled by political elites through a interconnected array of national central banks. New money is created by creating debt, and interest is charged on the debt. The debt imperative of money creates a growth imperative in the economy which is destructive of our social fabric and our environment. Greco argues for creation of credit exchange associations, free corrosive effects of interest charged on debt, the topic we pick up in part two.

Great Lakes Bioneers Conference Laurie Cirivello's keynote

The 10th Great Lakes Bioneers Conference was held the weekend of October 14-16, 2011 in Traverse City, Michigan. Laurie Cirivello gave the local keynote on Saturday morning on the "Media Commons".

Re-claiming The Media For Local Governance

Jocob WheelerJacob Wheeler first created the GLEN ARBOR SUN right out of high school. He continues in a wide ranging career of independent journalist including continuation of the Sun and major contributions to TheUptake.org.  Jacob joins Dave for a discussion of the role of media in a democracy and how especially critical it is today in development of effective local governance. Jacob tells of his experiences as an independent journalist especially the work of TheUptake.org in keeping the last Minnesota Senatorial election and the long court battle that followed highly visible to every citizen and therefore transparent. Likewise, their coverage of the Wisconsin battle to protect bargaining rights for public employees help launch that effort into a national campaign.