Sunday, January 3, 2010

Regarding Mondragon

Recently, the "Solidarity Economy Network" published an article that was printed in Time Magazine, about the Mondragon "Cooperative" Corporation (MCC), MCCs recent "letter of intent" with United Steelworkers (USW), and two very small workers cooperatives start-ups in Cleveland and SF Bay. While I applaud the efforts in Cleveland and SF Bay and wish them much success and a more honorable and principled and eventually all-encompassing "growth" than the original MCC, let's not get deluded by wishful thinking and political greenwash.

You must understand the cooptation that has occurred in the Mondragon "Cooperative" CORPORATION (MCC) which started small and highly principled, but has in reality evolved to little more than another predatory Capitalist Conglomerate. Starting as International Cooperative Alliance principled workers cooperatives, MCC has devolved to a Corporation, who according to this PR glitz article, has over 100 workers' cooperatives in a Corporation of 256 Companies. That translates to about 150 Companies, who are NOT workers' cooperatives, and knowing the history of Mondragon, it is a fairly safe bet that those 100 or so are probably functioning now as worker cooperatives in just about name only.

Early Mondragon experience can be a very useful model. But the bootstraps model that the Capitalists, including the lackey Labor Organization, USW, want us to get enthused about is a false promise and destined to fail like the MCC did in truely living out its original mission and intent.

Only a unified Socialism that precludes the corrupting missions and modus operandis of unprincipled Capitalist realities (Capitalism eschews externalities), will allow for the success of an economy that sets out to meet the needs of the people in an inclusive, equitable, humane, wellness oriented, sustainable, and peaceful manner.

Mike Morin

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