Ownership vs. Stewardship, Companies vs. Co-ops

8598400489_ac39a95679_k

After more than two decades of growth and success, Fort Collins based New Belgium Brewing became 100% employee owned three years ago, with the employee stock ownership plan buying out the 59% of the company previously held by its founders.  Today it sounds like they might be putting themselves on the auction block. With around 500 employees, and a potential valuation of a billion dollars, it’s not too hard to understand the temptation.  That’s $2 million worth of company value per employee.

Continue reading Ownership vs. Stewardship, Companies vs. Co-ops

Occupy Oakland’s Port Action

ZunguZungu’s account of the Occupy Oakland Port Action.  I really wonder how far this all will go.  It’s amazing how the informational connections we’ve created in the world are playing out.  How quickly things echo and get re-interpreted by new minds.  The derivative is still positive, so far as I can tell.

The capitalist network that runs the world

A team at the Swiss equivalent of MIT has revealed a dense knot of power and ownership interconnections within a particular subset of the world’s transnational corporations.  It will come as no surprise that these companies are overwhelming financial firms… but this is the first time that anyone has really been able to lay out the structure of this network of power that runs the world in detail, accounting for all of the subsidiary ownerships and mutual shareholding.  Tyler Durden would be inspired.  The research paper will be published in PLoS One here Real Soon Now.

Links for the week of June 4th, 2010

If you want to follow my shared links in real time instead of as a weekly digest, head over to Delicious. You can search them there easily too.
Continue reading Links for the week of June 4th, 2010

Links for the week of January 28th, 2010

If you want to follow my shared links in real time instead of as a weekly digest, head over to Delicious. You can search them there easily too.
Continue reading Links for the week of January 28th, 2010

Links for the week of August 28th, 2009

If you want to follow my shared links in real time instead of as a weekly digest, head over to Delicious. You can search them there easily too.
Continue reading Links for the week of August 28th, 2009

The Tragedy of the Marine Commons

I’ve made this parody before:

Give a man a fish, and he’ll eat for a day.
Teach a man to fish, and he’ll eat until the fish are extinct.

All indications are that our grandkids won’t be big fans of sashimi, as it will either be too expensive for them, or virtually non-existent, because we have driven the large fish species to (or near) extinction.  We’ve been making fish smaller, and less plentiful for millennia.  This is no huge surprise.  We ate all the tasty North American megafauna when we got here too.  We were hungry, and we didn’t know any better.  The world and its resources seemed vast beyond our comprehension.

Bluefin tuna in Tokyo fetch $25,000 each.
Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License by Sanctu

The situation today is tragic partly because we know exactly what we’re doing, and partly because we could be sustainably harvesting vastly more fish today than we are currently mining at an unsustainable rate, if only we could somehow contrive to let fish stocks rebound to their Pleistocene levels.  At those very high (pre-human) stocking rates, the sustainable take would be enormous, but we would have to manage the harvest carefully with quotas (which we didn’t do the first time around, and which we are much better equipped to do now).  Such quotas are sometimes discussed as if they were purely economic or political quantities, but in some important ways they are neither.

Continue reading The Tragedy of the Marine Commons