The localized economy is as old as the hills. We just forgot how it works. In the realm of energy it would work like this. Everyone would have a solar cell on top of the house, and every house would be properly insulated. I’m not completely against nuclear energy. It seems to work fine in France, but only as a public utility, not private. Private businesses tend to forgo the public good for profit. For example, the electric grid is used by plenty of private electric companies, but has never been upgraded. Why? It doesn’t increase profit. So instead of the profiteers upgrading the grid, the public is responsible for it. In that case, they should never own a utility, period. Shipping would be done mostly by train and only within a certain area. You could have this done almost entirely by train and small electric truck. People would ride public transport ideally, and drive electric cars if they wanted to. People should not have to drive a vehicle. It should be an option. Considering the impact that maintaining and insuring a vehicle has on each household, I think that the idea of the individual vehicle needs to be done away with. There would be no need to import oil into the region at all.
The economists like to wrangle over money and gold, but what is money really? Money is only what we say it is. Gold’s worth is only what price we choose to set on it. Do we really need this paper or this bling bling called gold? No. What we really need is food and material to make our clothing and material to make our houses. The price we set on it is arbitrary. We could grow food locally. We might need a greening of America like Europe did after World War II. The food would be based on the season. When was the last time you had vegetables that changed with the season? Do you even know which vegetables are in season? I used to see this in Japan where right in the middle of Tokyo; someone would be selling his/her vegetables from the farm. All the vegetables were seasonal, and they even celebrated the changing of the seasons with different delightful recipes. What happened to our food industry? Basically it became globalized and mechanized. McDonald’s has to import factory made bread from point A and millions of cows have to be chopped up at point B, so that you can have your wonderfully poisonous fast food over here at point C. With a localized economy that would come to a screeching halt. You would have your billionaires screaming, but they already have enough money and they have poisoned enough people already. You would have Uncle Joe’s okra kitchen in the South, where all the vegetables are local, and all the meat is local. Now local meat would mean –not much meat. In general our level of consumption would have to drop. Billy Bob only has so many cows, and he would prefer to keep them for milk. Susie May doesn’t want to chop up all of her chickens, so you will have to eat beans today. I saw this back in Thailand where the local farmer had one bull to plow his field. When foreigners came they demanded meat, and so the poor farmer had to give up his one plow bull to feed the gluttonous foreigners. Our whole country has become gluttonous. We stuff our faces with manufactured meat and bread.
Now we turn to local businesses. With the Baltic Dry Index falling we may have to move to this faster than we can imagine. What is the Baltic Dry Index? It just means that goods are not being shipped around the world. Why does that matter? Because most of the goods you buy come from China. A local business economy would be where your clothes are made from products locally grown. Let’s say that Joe grows cotton and flax, and he gives the cotton to Susie to be woven into material. This material is taken by either you directly or by Susie’s dress shop to make clothes. You might have to make your own clothes. The number of choices in the clothes department will drop. Susie can only produce so many dresses. Most manufacturing could be localized as well, to keep people working in the community.
This goes for land too. Even though my ancestors were big plantation owners in the South before the Civil War, I saw much more efficient income leveling farms in Japan and Thailand that were smaller. More of the land was owned by more of the people, and the wealth was worked around better than it is here. A few people could easily manage a small farm. There would be no need for imported or hired low wage slaves.