Newsletter No 4 : June/July 2022

Creating a Fairer, Sustainable and Participatory Economy

To Members and Friends of the Fractal Economy Cooperative (FEC)

FEC has reached another significant milestone in the Coop’s development.

The first disbursement of gift funds to 4 registered Not for Profit’s (NFP) has

recently been gifted to these lucky organisations.

The community NFP organisations were Chrysalis Steiner School in Thora, 2BBB Bellingen’s Community Radio, Bellingen Shire Electricity Alliance, and Home Care Nursing Training.

Also, Bellingen Environment Centre has recently joined the growing list of NFP’s.

Individual Member of the month:

FEC would like to recognise Jonas Bellchambers – Building and Carpentry Services. If you are wanting some building/carpentry work done check out the directory for Jonas’s contact details and give him a ring

Attention: Submissions of ideas

FEC is needing some help with drafting some promotional materials to be used on 2BBB to advertise our FEC Businesses, Individual and NFP memberships. If you would like to create a 30 to 60 second promo to be used in the Bellingen Community radio programs. Reply to contact@fractaleconomy.coop

Dear Members:

Please consider nominating yourself as a Director to the FEC Board of Directors for the upcoming AGM: Reply to contact@fractaleconomy.coop with your interest.

The current chairperson would like to increase the number of directors from 5 to 7

particularly the female representatives.

 

We also have in place the Web/App infrastructure to do the following:

  • Register members, through our website, as individuals, individual sellers, businesses, or not-for-profits (NFP).

 

  • Using our app, record sales between Coop members (recording done by the seller).

 

  • Levy a ‘community contribution’ of 3% on the seller (the recipient of money).

 

  • Individual and Individual Seller members, now vote on how they would like to see the gift money used. The allocation of gift funding is totally dependent on how FEC members vote.
  • There are 5 NFP’s registered, waiting to receive your vote Chrysalis Steiner School, Community Radio 2BBB, Bellingen Shire Electricity Alliance and Home Care Nursing Training, Bellingen Environment Centre.
  • The first invoicing to Businesses and Individual Sellers has been sent to those members and funds are starting to be deposited into the FEC gift fund account.
  • The funds collected will then be disbursed to the current NFP’s and others that register to receive gift funding. Thank you for your Community Contributions.

 

Membership:

 

Total current membership number is 48 and growing steadily. Find out more and register as a member go to the web site by clicking here  https://fractaleconomy.coop/ .

 

 

Tell your friends and ask your local business/service person if they are members.  

 

To succeed the Coop needs to acquire a critical mass where enough active members will generate sales and community contributions. If you are a ‘hesitant’ member, we encourage you to be one of the proactive ones who create the critical mass. We recognise that people are generally harried and time-stressed, we have taken every effort to ensure your ‘FEC experience’ is as straightforward and trouble free as possible. It shouldn’t take much of your time to get involved and that it is easy to register as a member (if you haven’t done so).  Participate by buying and selling goods and services from/to members. Record such sales with the use of our app; vote to allocate gift funding to your favourite NFP. These processes, and more, are described in our Hands on Guide.

If you no longer wish to receive this newsletter reply to this email @ contact@fractaleconomy.coop

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Transaction Tax

In the national economy, a transaction tax would be a flat rate tax on every monetary transaction with only a few minor exceptions such as transfers within a family unit. No costs or expense s by businesses will be tax deductible. Purchases of things like shares and currencies will also incur this tax (which pretty much wipes out the speculative transfers of capitalism). In the FEC economy we apply this tax to transfers between members so that we as a collective can do very good and powerful things with it. For marketing reasons, we have renamed this tax to ‘community contribution’.

Commons

We at the FEC do not think that the government is the appropriate collective institution to manage things like banking, taxation and land rental. These can all be taken out of the hands of government. Government should be restricted to policy making in the political realm. What we call the commons is an economic collective. This economic collective does not have the argy bargy of the political life. Outside of the capitalist context, it is the principle of cooperation and mutual aid that pervades the economic life, and it will have a very different structure to government. Because the term ‘public’ is often associated with government, we prefer the term ‘commons’ in reference to this economic collective.

Community Contribution

‘Community contribution’ is in fact the same as a transaction tax as described elsewhere [see Article 2 in ‘Further reading’]. The reason we have renamed the tax is for marketing reasons as people recoil from the notion of paying an extra tax. Tax payments is in fact how we as individuals contribute to the community in order to fund things like public transport, welfare and a functional judicial system. So people should be proud in saying that they pay their taxes. The reason that we have an aversion to the word tax is brought about by corporations who have the ability to make their expenses cost deductible. They load up all costs of dubious things into their income-expenditure calculations that they can get away with not paying a lot of the taxes that are their due. The whole scam trickles down to the rest of the economy and tax avoidance/evasion becomes an acceptable sport. In a true transaction tax, no expenses are tax deductible.

What is a fractal?

A fractal is by one definition ‘An object whose parts, at infinitely many levels of magnification, appear geometrically similar to the whole’. Take the fern leaf as shown in this image:

The first image above is a graphic picture of a whole fern leaf. If we take one of the ‘branches’ of the leaf – as depicted in the boxed section – and examine its structure, we find that the ‘branch replicates in full the pattern of the original fern leaf. The boxed section of the first image, rotated and appropriately magnified as in image 2, show an identical pattern to the whole leaf. If we take yet another ‘sub-branch’ out of the fern in image 2 as depicted in the boxed section of Image 2, we find the same leaf pattern replicated again. And so on.

The Fractal Economy Cooperative takes its name from this feature of fractals – that the part replicates the whole. We believe that what needs to be done in the global economy is the same as what needs to be done in the national economies; and that it is what we intend to do in the fractal economy. This means that we policies in a number of places that should also be practised in the national economy in order to make it a socially just and environmentally sustainable economy: direct democracy in the realm of policy making, direct individual participation in the allocation of public/commons spending; all the practices that make up for what we call commons banking, a new taxation system (which we call ‘community contribution’ for marketing reasons); support for cooperatives over share ownership of companies; a return to common ownership of land effected through the banking system.