Neoliberal Co-optation of Leading Co-op Organizations, and a Socialist Counter-Politics of Cooperation

Authors

  • Carl Ratner

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.14452/MR-066-09-2015-02_2

Keywords:

Economic Theory, Political Economy, Labor

Abstract

Many people think of cooperatives as small, locally owned businesses, such as groceries, cafes, or bicycle shops, where people can work in an equal and participatory non-capitalist organization. In reality, the U.S. co-op movement is tied to federal agencies whose agenda is promoting neoliberalism, both domestically and abroad, and the co-op movement itself has neoliberal leaders. Many co-ops in name are profit-driven capitalist corporations in practice. And even in the abstract, the co-op principles of smaller co-ops enable neoliberal cooperative politics. All of this, however, raises the question of what a co-op based on socialist values would be, and China’s Nanjie village provides a living example of that.

Published

2015-02-02

Issue

Section

Articles