The Whole City Catalogue
We need a compelling story to replace capitalism
“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” Buckminster Fuller


Do we need some uncontroversial, basic, universal aims, like: Fair rent, health, education, transport, to help create common ground, coalitions, collaboration and solidarity in going forward? It is important to understand we want to win things. Starting with some achievable goals we can win to boost confidence for bigger ones. We also need to base our actions around the pragmatic questions coming out of our communities, if we are to engage the many folk we will need if we are to win sustainable change. And importantly. We need to build a vision of the world we wish to create through our work that can be used to compel others to join us. And by finding our place in the movement, rather than fitting the movements place in our lifestyle and working on what needs done (As opposed to just what we like to do.)

We hear a lot about re-imagining, re-imaging, re-thinking, projections, ideas, about the city and the country, of what would be good if we had it. So here we are not talking so much about all the wonderful things and ideas we have. Which we do. But about the multifaceted elephant in the room that is given the shortest amount of time when we congregate to brainstorm ideas. The topics of organisation, solidarity, collaboration, movement building, coalitions, coops . But not just about producing more bits of the jigsaw, lists, or more interesting shapes “activities”, but about how do we start to put it together. How do we start to form a picture, a vision of where we are headed using the bits we already have. How do we start to create a compelling story of our own, to replace the neoliberal one? It seems we have most of the bits, and what we don’t have we will soon discover.

We will make mistakes many of them, embarrass ourselves, develop a brass neck. If things don’t work we will try other things. We will remember we are trying to “win” that will give us the confidence to carry on when unfortunate things happens. We will communicate with each other, show up as one of the most important things we do. Because we are out to win. We will find common ground even with people we don’t like, because we have bigger enemies to worry about. We will learn and start to understand the critical connections around each of our work, learn together avoid reinventing the wheel, support the things that need done first and that are agreed to be more urgent in building a movement. We will recognise and appreciate the merit in each others work as well as constructive critique of it.