96 pages of interviews, essays, reports from entrepreneurs and investors … and even a few paintings and a poem. Sharing the beauty of an emerging public conversation about food, money and the soil. Published twice a year. More engaging than a single blog post, more thought-provoking than a newsletter.
“This Journal, like the public conversation
that it reflects, is just what we need.
Authentic, nuanced, provocative, informative.”
ELIOT COLEMAN, AUTHOR OF THE NEW
The bestselling author of The End of nature issues an impassioned call to arms for an economy that creates community and ennobles our lives. In this powerful and provocative manifesto,
Bill McKibben offers the biggest challenge in a generation to the prevailing view of our economy. For the first time in human history, he observes,
"more" is no longer synonymous with "better"—indeed, for many of us, they have become almost opposites. McKibben puts forward a new way to think about the things we buy, the food we eat, the energy we use, and the money that pays for it all. Our purchases, he says, need not be at odds with the things we truly value.
A NATURAL HISTORY OF FOUR MEALS
What should we have for dinner? The question has confronted us since man discovered fire, but according to Michael Pollan, the bestselling author of The Botany of Desire, how we answer it today, at the dawn of the twenty-first century, may well determine our very survival as a species. Should we eat a fast-food hamburger? Something organic? Or perhaps something we hunt, gather, or grow ourselves? The omnivore’s dilemma has returned with a vengeance, as the cornucopia of the modern American supermarket and fast-food outlet confronts us with a bewildering and treacherous food landscape. What’s at stake in our eating choices is not only our own and our children’s health, but the health of the environment that sustains life on earth.
Defenders of globalization, free markets, and free trade insist there's no alternative to mega-stores like Wal-Mart -- Michael Shuman begs to differ. In "The Small-Mart Revolution, Shuman makes a compelling case for his alternative business model, one in which communities reap the benefits of "going local" in four key spending categories: goods, services, energy, and finance. He argues that despite the endless media coverage of multinational conglomerates, local businesses give more to charity, adapt more easily to rising labor and environmental standards, and produce more wealth for a community. They also spend more locally, thereby increasing community income and creating wealth and jobs. "The Small-Mart Revolution presents a visionary yet practical roadmap for everyone concerned with mitigating the worst of globalization.
In less than two decades, large retail chains have become the most powerful corporations in America. In this deft and revealing book, Stacy Mitchell illustrates how mega-retailers are fueling many of our most pressing problems, from the shrinking middle class to rising pollution and diminished civic engagement—and she shows how a growing number of communities and independent businesses are effectively fighting back.
Mitchell traces the dramatic growth of mega-retailers—from big boxes like Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Costco, and Staples to chains like Starbucks, Olive Garden, Blockbuster, and Old Navy—and the precipitous decline of independent businesses. Drawing on examples from virtually every state in the country, she unearths the extraordinary impact of these companies and the big-box mentality on everything from soaring gasoline consumption to rising poverty rates, failing family farms, and declining voting levels. Along the way, Mitchell exposes the shocking role government policy has played in the expansion of mega-retailers and builds a compelling case that communities composed of many small, locally owned businesses are healthier and more prosperous than those dominated by a few large chains.