Comment From Noam Chomsky
"Something is profoundly wrong with capitalism.
Vast inequalities of wealth and power will not take the world to a better future. 'What is the alternative?' is a question echoing all around the globe. Michael Albert has wrestled with this question for many years, and his answer regarding economics has captured the imagination of many.
'Participatory Economics' - 'Parecon' for short - Albert's proposed economic system to replace capitalism, rejects competitive anti- sociality, individualist greed, commercial homogenization, and corporate hierarchy, and in their place elevates solidarity, equity, diversity, and self management. In Realizing Hope, Albert goes further to offer insights about how whole areas of life might be desirably transformed in a new society.
Whether exploring the way we work, our relationship to the earth, the transformation of global financial institutions, science, technology, the family, culture, sport, art, or education, people rather than profit always take centre stage."
Michael Albert was radicalized in college at MIT in Cambridge, MA, in the sixties and active in campus, national, and community efforts then and later. He co-founded South End Press, Z Magazine, the Z Media Institute, and ZNet where he continues to work. He has been involved in diverse movements and written widely about contemporary relations, history, and especially social change strategy and vision. Realizing Hope is his seventeenth book.
"In many earlier studies, Michael Albert has carried out careful in-depth inquiries into systems of participatory economics (parecon), analyzing in detail how they can function justly, equitably, and efficiently, and how they can overcome many of the criminal features of current social and economic arrangements.
This new and very ambitious study, Realizing Hope, casts the net far more widely, extending to just about every major domain of human concern and mode of human interaction, and investigating with care and insight how, in these domains, parecon-like principles could lead to a far more desirable society than anything that exists, and also how these goals can be constructively approached. It is another very valuable and provocative contribution to the quest for a world of much greater freedom and justice."
Realizing Hope : Life beyond Capitalism (Paperback)